Fianna Fáil TD for Laois Sean Fleming has called on the Minister for Education Jan O’Sullivan to investigate why children who are eligible for school transport are being denied access to the service.
Deputy Fleming made the comments after being contacted by a number of concerned parents who have pointed out that Bus Éireann is failing to accommodate their children, despite them being fully eligible for the school transport scheme.
“In recent days I have been contacted by a number of parents who are having serious difficulties in securing school transport for their children. These parents have registered their children for the school transport scheme and have been told that they are within the catchment area and eligible for the service. However they have now been told, at the last minute, that there is no space for their children on the school buses” said Deputy Fleming.
“This is a serious issue that needs immediate investigation by Minister O’Sullivan. It is unacceptable that parents are being told so late in the day that their children will not be accommodated on school buses, despite being fully eligible for the transport scheme. Parents are finding it impossible to put in place alternative arrangements at such short notice.
“Minister O’Sullivan needs to immediately contact Bus Éireann to request a detailed report on how many children with an entitlement to the school transport scheme are not being accommodated by the company. The Minister also needs to get to the bottom as to why they are not getting their seat on the bus.
“It is totally unacceptable that children have been left stranded and unable to access their schools. The Minister must address this issue as a matter of urgency.”