Seanad debates

Wednesday, 28 September 2016

Commencement Matters

School Transport Eligibility

2:30 pm

Photo of Mark DalyMark Daly (Fianna Fail) | Oireachtas source

I thank the Minister of State for coming to the House to discuss the provision whereby if a family has a medical card and there is space on the bus, a pupil is entitled to a concessionary ticket to the school of their choice. I know the Minister of State is looking at the whole issue of school transport but this issue is very contentious.The nearest-school rule has proved to be disastrous for some rural schools because it has halved the numbers attending. It is also an issue that pupils in some counties who went to primary school together have to go to separate secondary schools due to quirks in the system. I am sure the Minister of State is aware of some of those issues.

The specific question I have, however, is on the medical card and whether a particular person would be entitled to a concessionary ticket to a school of his or her choice if there is space on the bus. At the moment, the child does not have any choice and must go to the school designated by Bus Éireann.


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