Rosie Cooper MP

Working hard for the people of West Lancashire

18/10/10 Rosie Cooper MP welcomes review on church school transp

Rosie Cooper MP has welcomed the review of the decision to introduce a flat rate £2 daily charge for parents sending their children denominational schools.  The review is to be carried out by the Education Overview and Scrutiny Committee at Lancashire County Council after Labour councillors called-in the decision.
Last week Rosie Cooper MP labelled the introduction of the charge as a tax on faith.  Rosie was appalled that parents choosing a Church school for their children could be faced with £380 per year per child in travel costs from September 2011.
This new charge will apply to those new pupils entitled to the discretionary transport assistance on denominational grounds.
MP Rosie said:
“It is right that this decision is being reviewed because the impact of this charge will affect many thousands of families across Lancashire.  For some parents it will mean they no longer have a choice to send their children to a Church School because they cannot afford the travel costs.  This is a totally unacceptable situation.
“In areas like West Lancashire that cover a large geographical area there are many families that live many miles from their nearest suitable Church School.  This charge will have a major impact on those families.
“I would encourage the Cabinet Member for Schools to seriously consider the views of the Education Overview and Scrutiny Committee and reverse this decision for the sake of many families and children across West Lancashire.”
Rosie raised the matter with the Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove, in the House of Commons and has subsequently written to him with further detail of the decision.

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