The Conservative run County Council has decided to cut £500,000 per annum in the funding of vital public transport for young people, including those with special educational needs.
This followed a consultation with pupils, parents and schools where only 279 responses were received, of which, shockingly, just 15 were young people. Respondents were not allowed to ask for the continuation of the existing service, but were asked to choose between 5 different proposals of which, thankfully two of the more draconian were withdrawn.
Families with children with Special Educational Needs, who already face significant costs related to their children's needs, will be asked to pay up to £1173 towards the cost of their transport.
Councillor Mark Watkin, Lib Dem Opposition Spokesperson for Education commented “like so many cost cutting proposals I am worried about the ill-considered consequences. Will families with children decide to withdraw their children from courses because the additional charges will be more than they can bear? At least the county has promised to review this scheme after running it for a while to see what the impact has been."