GCVS is delighted to report that Glasgow City Council has formally approved a decision to reverse a previous measure to lower the distance threshold for free bus passes, which was due to affect 1500 pupils. The Council’s decision came following examination of evidence gathered by the Cost of the School Day project.
The decision will offer relief to struggling parents. Councillors decided that families have been hit hard enough by recent changes to social security and that the extra cost of transport for those living less than 3 miles away would exacerbate financial worries for parents. The threshold will now remain at 2.2 miles for secondary school pupils and 1.2 miles for primary school children.
Speaking to the Evening Times, following the decision, new Council Leader Frank McAveety said:
“In terms of recent developments and further cuts to working families tax credits, we were concerned the impact on families of losing free travel is quite dramatic.
“As a former teacher, I am keen to remove as many barriers to getting to school as possible. I want to make sure youngsters can get to school and we want to work with families. I am listening to the concerns raised by parents.
“I have been very concerned about what we have heard about the cost of the school day because Glasgow families are hard pressed enough as it is.”
The Cost of the School Day project, led by Child Poverty Action Group, on behalf of Glasgow’s Poverty Leadership Panel,has worked with Glasgow schools and pupils to identify and tackle poverty related stigma and exclusion in schools and is having a big impact on thinking and planning by school staff, who are now more aware of many of the barriers to participation faced by poorer pupils. The findings from the research have now been published.
GCVS is a member of the Poverty Leadership Panel’s Child Poverty Subgroup, a group of third and public sector organisations looking to address child poverty in the city, who expressed concern about the impact that the initial policy decision would have on the city’s poorest families.
Source: Evening Times