Have your say on plans for learner travel
Posted on: Tuesday 10 December 2019
Residents of Bridgend County Borough Council are being urged to have their say on potential changes to school transport provision.
Faced with making cuts of £35m over the next four years, the council is reviewing all non-essential services to see where savings can be made and has launched a public consultation which will end on 5 January 2020.
The consultation is inviting views on potential changes to travel arrangements for school pupils and students attending further education colleges.
It includes proposals such as the withdrawal of transport for all learners benefitting from an available walking route to school (under two miles for primary school children and under three miles for secondary school pupils), and the removal of escorts from all taxis and minibuses of less than eight passengers.
Escorts will still operate on vehicles where the council considers it in the interest of pupils, especially those with additional learning needs.
The consultation is also asking people for their views on proposals such as ending free transport for learners aged 16 or over who go to school or college, and no longer providing free transport for nursery-age pupils (ages three and four) as there is no law that says the council needs to provide free transport for these learners.
Bridgend County Borough Council is one of the few authorities in Wales currently offering such a generous provision, and we understand that these proposals may have an impact on learners and their families.
The fact remains that while we would much prefer to maintain a generous learner travel service, we are no longer able to do so after suffering unprecedented cuts to our budget. Before we make a final decision, we want to fully understand the impact of these proposals, so I hope as many people as possible will take part in this consultation, consider the various options that have been identified, and tell us what they think.
We want to continue to seek to protect the most vulnerable members of the community and target our resources where they are needed most, but we are going to need your help to be able to do so effectively.Councillor Charles Smith, Cabinet Member for Education and Regeneration
For general enquiries, please contact Bridgend County Borough Council's customer contact centre:
Our offices are temporarily closed to the public.