Yesterday (23/3/22) Kent County Council's Scrutiny Committee met to discuss the decision by the Conservative Cabinet to whack up the cost of school travel in Kent.
About 14,000 children have a Kent Travel Pass for which their parents pay £370 per year so they can get to school by bus. Several thousand more children have a pass at a reduced price as they come from a low income family.
Liberal Democrats have condemned the proposed increased in Kent Travel Saver Passes.
Cllr Mike Sole (Canterbury South) said, "This year families are facing huge increases in the cost of living. Now on top of this, especially higher energy prices, Conservative run KCC wants to increase the cost of getting to school and college by 20%."
It is proposed in the draft budget that the Kent Travel Saver Pass increases from £370 to £450 and the 16+ pass from £420 to £500.
Cllr Mike Sole added, "Not only will this increases put huge financial pressure on families, but also increase the likelihood of some parents instead choosing to drive their children to school. This will lead to increased congestion, pollution and CO2 emissions."
Two years ago Kent Conservatives promised to deliver support to all children with Special Educational Needs within 20 weeks. In 2021 only a third are getting the support they need in that time. Not only is it a broken promise, it is also a failure of political leadership and will only add in time to an adult social care budget spiralling out of control.
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