Adams called for re­sponse over school trans­port

The Argus - - NEWS - BY OLIVIA RYAN

Louth TD Gerry Adams has called on the Min­is­ter for Ed­u­ca­tion to ad­dress the prob­lems faced by fam­i­lies in Louth who are still un­able to ac­cess places for their chil­dren un­der the school trans­port scheme .

He said that hav­ing pre­vi­ously raised con­cerns with the Min­is­ter re­gard­ing these places, a re­sponse to a par­lia­men­tary ques­tion re­ceived in the last week shows that chil- dren are still with­out places on the scheme.

‘Many fam­i­lies in Louth have prob­lems with the cur­rent school trans­port scheme sys­tem. A re­sponse from the Min­is­ter to my par­lia­men­tary ques­tions shows that those prob­lems still ex­ist. Nine­teen chil­dren are still with­out a place on a school bus. Par­ents of chil­dren with spe­cial needs are still hav­ing their ap­pli­ca­tions pro­cessed.

The Louth TD re­vealed that he has been re­ceiv­ing rep- re­sen­ta­tions from fam­i­lies af­fected.

‘Hav­ing been con­tacted by dis­tressed par­ents, it is clear that the lack of a seat on the school bus for these chil­dren has a real im­pact.’

He added that many fam­i­lies ‘do not have the abil­ity to pro­vide or pay for al­ter­na­tive trans­port.’

Mean­while he pointed out that Sinn Féin has pub­lished a ‘de­tailed and costed ru­ral school trans­port plan that seeks to amend the cur­rent pol­icy which is clearly fail­ing many fam­i­lies around the coun­try.’

We would in­tro­duce mea­sures such as elim­i­nat­ing the lot­tery sys­tem for con­ces­sion­ary ticket hold­ers, pro­vide a dero­ga­tion from the near­est school rule where this can be jus­ti­fied as a re­sult of es­tab­lished com­mu­nity or so­cial links, as well as re­duced costs for par­ents.’

Deputy Adams con­cluded: ‘I will con­tinue to raise this is­sue with the Min­is­ter.’

Deputy Gerry Adams.

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