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Barking and Dagenham Council Leader urges clarity on school transport social distancing

PUBLISHED: 07:00 11 August 2020

Barking and Dagenham Council leader Darren Rodwell has urged the government to clarify its advice on home-to-school transport for children with SEN. Picture: Andrew Brookes.

Barking and Dagenham Council leader Darren Rodwell has urged the government to clarify its advice on home-to-school transport for children with SEN. Picture: Andrew Brookes.

Archant

The leader of Barking and Dagenham Council has urged the government to clarify its advice on home-to-school transport for children with special education needs.

Writing to parliamentary under secretary of state for children and families Vicky Ford MP, councillor Darren Rodwell outlined inconsistencies within the guidance on social distancing: “The latest guidance from the department of education, published on July 2, says social distancing rules will not apply on school transport from September. At the same time, the government’s Covid-19 guidance when using national transport says passengers should be socially distanced.”

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Despite the potential confusion, Cllr Rodwell said the borough intends “to provide socially-distanced travel for our most vulnerable pupils” come September.

However, adhering to the rules will come at a cost: “Our costs are set to double if not treble, from £3.4million to between £10m and £17m in the coming year.”

Clarity is required for local authorities to plan, he concluded.


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