Campaigners react to Lincolnshire school transport review

Members of the Glenside school transport campaign, who are calling for Lincolnshire County Council to review its policy. Campaigners come from Castle Bytham, Little Bytham, Creeton and the surrounding area. EMN-150331-162320001

Members of the Glenside school transport campaign, who are calling for Lincolnshire County Council to review its policy. Campaigners come from Castle Bytham, Little Bytham, Creeton and the surrounding area. EMN-150331-162320001

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Campaigners have welcomed a partial review of free school transport in Lincolnshire, but insist the whole policy needs looking at.

A proposal to review the grammar school section of Lincolnshire County Council’s policy came before the authority’s children and young people’s scrutiny committee on Friday last week.

Councillors agreed to move ahead with the review, but parents living in and around Castle Bytham, Little Bytham and Creeton say the scope should be increased.

The villages lie the same distance from Bourne and Stamford, nine miles, but only get free transport to Stamford Welland Academy.

Jane King, from Creeton, helped form the Glenside School Transport Campaign group. She welcomed the review, but called on the council to include comprehensive schools as well.

“The designated transport areas for comprehensive schools have also been in place since the policy started in the 1970s and remain unchanged since this time,” she said.

“ Education provision has changed dramatically during the last 40 years and yet the council refuses to consider that the areas need to be reviewed in line with these changes.”

Mrs King said reviewing grammar schools would “only address half the problem”.

Fellow campaigner Kasia Doran said the group had asked executive councillor for children’s services Patricia Bradwell (Con) to review transport to both comprehensive and grammar transport.

She added: “Coun Bradwell decided to do something so it appears she is listening, but she is doing only what she deems to be necessary, and not what was asked of her.”

Coun Bradwell said a task and finish review team would be put together at the end of June.

She added: “In the following months this group will set out exactly what they will be reviewing and the work should start in September, with a target of reporting back to children and young people scrutiny committee in March 2016.”