Assistants back on school buses

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Parent power has have won out in a battle to reinstate assistants on school buses.

Passenger Transport Assistants were scheduled to be removed from buses, coaches and taxis conveying pupil to mainstream primary schools as part of a £1.4 million savings programme for school transport.

But Warwickshire County Council leader Councillor Alan Farnell has announced the authority will be reinstating the assistants on all buses to primary schools across the county. He claims the money has been made available through savings elsewhere, such as a “robust tendering process using e-auctions,” resulting in lower operational prices.

A petition calling for the reinstatement of the assistants was signed by 3,000 people after concerns were raised about children’s safety.

Cllr Heather Timms, portfolio holder for Children, Young people and Families, said: “The council has been able to meet the £1.4million it identified as a necessary saving from the school transport programme through other measures, so we are willing to acknowledge the concerns of parents and schools and reverse this decision.”

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