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knocker

Cost getting children to school

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County Councils have a legal responsibility to ensure children can get to school. This comes at a price.

 

I know the taxi firm I use has a contract to take a couple of kids from here to Penzance every day so I wondered what the total costs were.

 

It would appear the cost of transporting Cornish pupils by taxis is close to £4million..

 

The information was released via a Freedom of Information request, with the £3.9m cost taking up a third of the £12.4m school transport budget.

 

The cost is an average of £17.33 per pupil, with 1,189 children taken by taxi or cars if theyare not on a designated bus route, or if they have special needs.

 

While Cornwall Council has a legal duty to pay for the journeys, the cabinet member for children, schools and families, Andrew Wallis said a spending review was under way.

 

Nationally the figure is huge.

 

Councils spend £155m on taxis to ferry children to school Hundreds of millions of pounds is being spent ferrying children to school by taxi every year amid continuing concerns over pupils’ access to top quality education.

 

Data released under the Freedom of Information Act shows councils are spending vast sums of taxpayers’ money – particularly in rural areas – on private hire vehicles during the school run.

 

Some £155m was spent by just over 30 local authorities alone on taxis for children last year – the equivalent of more than £800,000 for each school day.

 

Extrapolated nationally, it is estimated that the total will run into hundreds of millions of pounds.

Officials insist a large chunk of the bill is made up of the cost of taking children with special needs by taxi and private hire minibus to school.

 

But taxis are also being hired to transport thousands of pupils who failed to secure a place at their nearest school to other primaries and secondaries miles from their home.

 

 

 

 

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/education/educationnews/9888482/Councils-spend-155m-on-taxis-to-ferry-children-to-school.html

 

EDIT: Mods could you stick the of into the title. Ta.

Edited by knocker

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Cost my nippa 60p a day on the bus - but more often his ma takes him and a bunch of pals in the car, about two miles....

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Where I grew up the village was 9 miles from school, so that meant the bus every day.  Where I live now is technically rural still, just a larger town and still see today the school buses doing the same runs, only the posh/rich here use a taxi unless it is a council funded reason.

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I used to be a taxi driver until earlier this year, I gave up partly because of being made to do more and more of these long school journeys for much less than what Joe Bloggs would have to pay in cash to go the same distance. The council actually get the journeys ridiculously cheap (one involved going from Shrewsbury to Ludlow for just £22, the normal fare is around £35-40)- and the driver doesn't get paid straight away, he has to wait anything up to 3 months.

 

The council actually put the jobs out to "tender" and invariably the lowest bidding firm gets it, not caring about the effect on either the drivers or other customers who can't get a taxi at certain times of day because of all the school jobs. While certainly something has to be provided to get disabled/special needs to a suitable school which might be in another town, the number of kids who got taxis because they had been entered for the 4th nearest school, or had been expelled from ones they could get to without a taxi, or even who couldn't be trusted to get on the bus was ridiculous- surely these ones are the parents' responsibility.

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I used to be a taxi driver until earlier this year, I gave up partly because of being made to do more and more of these long school journeys for much less than what Joe Bloggs would have to pay in cash to go the same distance. The council actually get the journeys ridiculously cheap (one involved going from Shrewsbury to Ludlow for just £22, the normal fare is around £35-40)- and the driver doesn't get paid straight away, he has to wait anything up to 3 months.

 

The council actually put the jobs out to "tender" and invariably the lowest bidding firm gets it, not caring about the effect on either the drivers or other customers who can't get a taxi at certain times of day because of all the school jobs. While certainly something has to be provided to get disabled/special needs to a suitable school which might be in another town, the number of kids who got taxis because they had been entered for the 4th nearest school, or had been expelled from ones they could get to without a taxi, or even who couldn't be trusted to get on the bus was ridiculous- surely these ones are the parents' responsibility.

 

I know the boss of the firm I use quite well and he would agree without reservation with the above. Not only that whilst the taxi is out of town it's losing the earnings it would normally have made.

 

Of course children with special needs are a different matter as there are so few special needs schools.

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When I was nipper I had to walk to school over a moorland road which was a 6 mile round trip in all weathers, they are to namby pamby these days and if people aren't being ferried in cars, taxis and buses the whole world comes to a halt. Of course some children like knocker suggest need transport and those should remain a priority.

Edited by Sceptical Inquirer

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Gotta admit that kids these days are so lazy. Nowadays most don't walk to school even if it's 15-20 mins walk away. Parents clog up roads with their cars waiting for their little darlings.  

 

Some reasons for this is safety but when I was at school I walked 30 mins to school there and back in all weather's and there was still the odd weirdo knocking about as there always has been but I never heard of anything bad happening to kids in our school of 900 pupils who mainly walked.

 

No wonder a lot of children are fat these days. Their wrapped up in cotton wool and this is partly due to the nanny state we live in. I understand if kids live in rural areas it is harder to get to school, but the vast majority of people in the UK live in areas close to schools.

Edited by Gaz1985

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i used to walk to school everyday on my own from the age of 7 approx 2miles each way..my mum couldn't afford the 5p a day on the bus as we didn't live far enough away to get free bus travel...my kids were not allowed to walk to school alone (dictated by the school) until they were in year 6..about aged 11.

Edited by cheeky_monkey

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