Suffolk County Council have changed their Home-School transport policy. The changes came into effect in September. The new policy creates divisions within families and communities, and changes the catchment areas for local schools. The new policy was introduced in order to save money, however it's not clear how it will possibly achieve this.
Some children still get transport to school as they did last year. But others - who may live next door or even in the same family! - are being refused free transport. Instead, Suffolk intend to charge parents £750 per child per year (increasing yearly) to access what they call a 'spare seat' on the school bus. If they can't do this, the children have to attend different schools. This is divisive, cruel and unfair.
The new policy is causing stress to children and their parents, causing hardship for many families, is increasing car traffic in villages and round schools, and disrupts school catchments and school to school relationships. It due course it also looks likely to affect the bus companies and other community members who use buses to get about in our rural county.
We are campaigning for the new policy to be completely reviewed. Meanwhile we call for three changes:
The Key Facts page tells you about the main changes in the new policy and the issues parents now face. The News page links to articles about the policy in the media. To keep up to date with our campaign please register for updates.
Please Contact Us to tell us how the policy will affect your family.
Maps showing 'split villages' and 'safe walking routes' can be found here.