Suffolk school buses policy reviewed by county council

Related Stories

Suffolk's high school bus provision has been reviewed following the granting of approval for four free schools.

Free schools have been approved in Beccles, Brandon, Clare and Saxmundham, but they do not have catchment areas.

The county council's proposal is for free transport to be based on primary school catchment areas or whether a school is nearest to a child's home.

The county said its budget for school transport was going to rise by £1m to £20.5m next year.

The local authority said the policy proposal aimed to ensure as many parents as possible had a bus service to the schools they chose for their children.

Councillor Graham Newman, education spokesman at the Conservative-run local authority, said: "We have to guard against creating whole new transport networks at the taxpayers' expense, so we are limiting free transport to 'transport priority areas'.

Legal obligation

"I'm confident that we've found a workable solution that will both make transport decisions fair for everyone whilst at the same time protecting taxpayers' interests."

The county said it has a legal obligation to provide free transport to a child's nearest school if they lived more than two miles away for those aged under eight and more than threee miles away for those aged over eight.

For children in Haverhill, Clare and Sudbury the criteria would be based on primary school catchment boundaries.

The same policy would apply in Mildenhall and Brandon, but children in Lakenheath would be eligible for travel to either town.

Free transport would only be offered to Saxmundham free school if it was a child's nearest school.

Free transport would be offered to the Beccles free school, as long as the child met the eligibility criteria.

The proposals would mean no changes for children who get the bus to existing county council-run schools.

Suffolk County Council's cabinet will vote on the proposals on 10 July.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

BBC Suffolk



Min. Night 5 °C


  • FridgeCool customer

    The village that has just got its first fridge

  • Lincoln Perkins (in the middle of the image) carried Churchill's coffin with seven other menNear miss

    How pallbearers almost dropped Churchill's coffin

  • Josef Mengele in SS uniformThe twins of Auschwitz

    How a Nazi doctor experimented on identical siblings

  • Alok'Red market'

    The desperate patients in India turning to illegal blood donors

  • Bank House, 27 King Street, LeedsIn pictures

    Some of the office buildings new to the National Heritage List

Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.