Saturday, 26 February 2011

And Why Were They Doing This In The First Place?

Essex County Council is proposing to stop funding faith school buses, meaning parents will be responsible for the full cost of transporting any child starting school from September 2012.
News to me that council tax payers were stumping up the fares in the first place!

How many are we talking about?
At the moment, 1,790 children in Essex receive daily transport to 49 faith schools, costing an average of £1,662 per primary school child and £818 per secondary school child.
Scrapping this service would save the council £2.2million a year, which the authority says will be redirected into core services, such as school improvement and children’s services.
I should damn well think so!
Funding transport to faith schools is not a statutory requirement and the council says the move will bring the service in line with its existing policy for grammar schools.
So, why were they ever doing it?

Was this just another ‘throw money at everything, there’s plenty of it!’ moment?

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

If they redirect all their savings to spend elsewhere they will save zero. So how does that help?

tolkein said...

Councils pay for transport for children living more than 3 miles from their school. I wonder how they pick on 'faith' schools as an exception. Remember, about a quarter of primary and middle schools are Church of England schools and about one in 16 secondary schools (that's around 4,600 schools). The Roman Catholic schools are around 2,100. The Churches started building schools in England and Wales long before the State introduced compulsory education. They also subsidise the state. The Churches bear 10% of the capital costs of Church schools - money the taxpayer doesn't have to stump up. If councils pay bus fares for children attending schools, why exclude those attending Church schools?

Greencoat said...

Very well said, Tolkein.

Church Schools are wonderful and should be supported to the hilt.

Let's cut money going to all the other alien nonsense this country is riddled with.

English Viking said...

The fact that the 'state' compels children to attend school, and compels adults to pay for it via taxation, should be reason enough for the children to be transported, free of charge, to and fro the indoctrination centres.

JuliaM said...

"If they redirect all their savings to spend elsewhere they will save zero. So how does that help?"

It might mean them not having to cut a REAL service. Like road repair or taking away the rubbish.

"If councils pay bus fares for children attending schools, why exclude those attending Church schools?"

I'd rather they didn't pay for any of it, saving disability access...

"The fact that the 'state' compels children to attend school, and compels adults to pay for it via taxation, should be reason enough for the children to be transported, free of charge..."

There's always homeschooling.

Henry Crun said...

@tolkein, absolutely. The church schools save the taxpayer money.

Derbyshire County Council tried a similar wheeze last year. It is nothing to do with transport costs at all but just another dig at faith schools whose league table results are consistently higher than the "bog-standard" comprehensives and primaries.

You see, Labour view excellence as "elitist" and rather than raise the standards of all schools, prefer all schools to operate at mediocre.

Guaranteed if the faith schools were Muslim rather than Christian the council would be falling over itself to fire hose money at them.