Disappointment as school transport subsidies face axe

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Plans are on the table to axe subsidised transport for pupils studying at faith schools in Derbyshire – an issue that proved hugely controversial when suggested in Sheffield.

Consultations with parents have begun on the issue and will run until December 2.

County councillors say the current service providing transport for 1,680 pupils costs £1 million a year.

Coun Kevin Gillott, cabinet member for children and younger adults, said: “We are extremely disappointed to have to consider ending subsidised transport to faith schools.”

But he said the cuts were unavoidable .

“Sadly we have no choice because of £157 million cuts the Coalition Government has told us to make over the next five years,” Coun Gillott added.

Results of the consultation will be considered by the cabinet before a decision is made in the new year.

The proposed changes would not come into effect until September 2015.

Under the proposed changes the authority would still continue to provide free home to school transport for 9,000 pupils attending schools in their ‘normal area’ – if their secondaries are more than three miles from home.