Flawed scheme seen 6862 school children refused transport – Deputy Carol Nolan
Sinn Féin spokesperson on Education and Skills, Teachta Carol Nolan, has expressed alarm at figures revealed today by Bus Éireann, in response to a parliamentary question by the TD, which shows the number of children in each county that have requested school transport but were not granted a school ticket.
Teachta Nolan said:
“The figures received by Bus Éireann show that the flaws in the school transport scheme are affecting families right across the state.
“The figures show that 6862 pupils requested school transport on a concessionary basis across the state and were not issued with a bus ticket in September.
“In particular 759 pupils paid for a bus ticket but were subsequently told that no seat was available.
“The figures show that for Offaly and Tipperary, 521 pupils applied for school transport but were not issued with a ticket in September.
“I met with Minister Halligan and Bus Éireann today to discuss issues concerning communication with Bus Éireann in relation to the school transport scheme and, while this was helpful, it is one element of a very flawed process.
“I have been assured personally by the Minister of State that the findings of the school transport review will be published imminently and I await the report.
“It is clear that action needs to be taken to ensure that the school transport system meets the needs of pupils, schools and parents and I hope that the review will make strong recommendations in this regard.”