Help with school transport will be victim of budget cutbacks

County Councillor Matthew Tomlinson
County Councillor Matthew Tomlinson
Have your say

Families of youngsters who don’t go to their nearest school face a hike in bus fares.

Thousands of children in mainstream schools could be affected as Lancashire County Council bids to shave its’s £8.5m school transport bill.

More than half of the money is spent on pupils who don’t qualify for free transport but under current council policy get discretionary help with the cost of getting to and from school.

Now, following a public consultation exercise, the county‘s cabinet member for children, young people will be asked to agree to a string measures aimed at slashing the bill.

The heaviest axe will fall on support for families who don’t send their children to the nearest school.

A report due to be considered by Coun Matthew Tomlinson on Thursday wants to see this kind of support scrapped from next September.

And, pupils already attending faith schools who pay towards school transport could see their contribution rise by £195 to £475 a year, season tickets will also rise.

Other cuts include help for pupils who move home while in years six, 10 or 11 along with a withdrawal of support for children who need temporary transport due to illness or because a parent can’t take them to school.

The report said the consultation received just over 1,000 replies.

The report said:“ While the response was largely negative, this was to be expected.”