Faith school transport costs may be cut

PUBLISHED: 11:11 24 September 2013 | UPDATED: 11:11 24 September 2013

Somerset County Council

Somerset County Council

Copyright Archant Ltd

TRANSPORT subsidies for children who attend faith schools could be reduced to the same level as those who do not.

The cost to Somerset County Council for bus places to take children to faith schools is just under £680 a year, of which the council subsidises £440, with parents paying the rest.

In comparison, parents paying for non-faith schools are subsidised by £602.20 a year.

Councillor Frances Nicholson, cabinet member for children and families, said: “The current proposals have been put together in response to the feedback we received to previous proposals on the issue of faith transport subsidies.

“It’s important that we hear the views of the public, and that we take that into account when we are considering changes like this.”

The original proposal was for the council to withdraw from discretionary faith transport altogether.

But this has been changed to bring the subsidies to the same level following feedback which indicated withdrawing from faith transport could have a significant impact and schools and communities.

The public can now comment on the new proposal by visiting www.somersetconsults.org.uk/consult.ti or calling 01823 355850, and the consultation ends on November 5.

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