Tuesday, 26 March 2019

Ceisteanna (388)

Thomas Byrne


388. Deputy Thomas Byrne asked the Minister for Education and Skills the number of cases in which taxis are engaged to transport children to schools; the number of school children involved; and the amount spent annually by county. [13751/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Education)

School transport is a significant operation managed by Bus Éireann on behalf of the Department.

There are currently over 117,500 children, including over 13,000 children with special educational needs, transported in over 5,000 vehicles on a daily basis to primary and post-primary schools throughout the country covering over 100 million km annually.

Bus Éireann has advised that in 2018 over 4,000 children with special educational needs were availing of school transport services in taxis at a cost of some €32m. The use of taxis in the school transport scheme is almost exclusively an element of the Special Education Needs Scheme.

The level of detailed information requested is not readily available; I have requested Bus Éireann to respond directly to the Deputy when the figures are compiled.