Written Answers. - School Transport.

Michael Ring

Ceist:

394 Mr. Ring asked the Minister for Education the reason the school bus service was removed for students attending Louisburgh secondary school (details supplied) in County Mayo. [16281/96]

The school bus service in question has not been removed but has been changed.

A school transport contractor in the Louisburgh area has resigned and has not been replaced due to a reduction in numbers requiring transport from the area west of Louisburgh. Instead the remaining four school buses for this area have been reorganised resulting in a larger capacity vehicle being allocated to one of the routes, with a resultant change in its operating times.

The pupils in question are picked-up at 7.55 a.m. and set-down at 16.50 p.m. Because the bus contractor involved lives in the locality the pupils are picked up over a mile nearer to their homes, but at an earlier time. The set down time is also later than in previous years.

When establishing school transport services, routes are planned in such a way as to ensure as far as possible that travelling and waiting times do not exceed three hours for post-primary pupils. The pupils in question are considered to have a reasonable and adequate level of service in the context of the general operation of the school transport scheme.