So here’s the deal, one year your child is eligible to go on the school bus, you get a letter and all that changes.
Who’s fault is that? Speaking to a Department of Education official they seem to lay the blame squarely with the parents, for not keeping abreast of legislation. Legislation which has been implemented in some areas but not in others, creating all sorts of confusion.
From last year, the Department of Education began to dictate to parents which school your child must attend, regardless of ethos and based on geographical distance. If you live between two schools then you must go to the closest one.
Our closest school is full. There are no operational guidelines to deal with that situation. It is ill constructed legislation because it doesn’t work on the ground.
This school term, students who have already been on the bus a year have now been told, in no uncertain terms to pay €350 per child (second level) or change schools. How can you tell a child to change schools after they’ve completed their first year!
What can be done?
There are a dozen parents affected by this unfair and uncompromising school transport system on our road alone. More and more are sharing their experiences and talking of protest. I would urge anyone in a similar situation to first download the appeals form here and fill it out. Get it to the department A.S.A.P. as they only meet once a month!
Then sign this petition and get your friends and family to do likewise.
There is strength in numbers, so network and connect with other families in similar circumstances. Contact local politicians (some actually still work during the Dáil break). Let them know what is going on and that this government legislation is unjust and has gone too far.