« BackBus Eireann makes offer to Annascaul students in school bus transport controversy

Bus Éireann has made an offer to a number of Annascaul students in a controversy over access to school bus transport.

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In recent years, students between Lougher Cross and Tralee used a bus service run by a local operator on behalf of Bus Eireann, to attend secondary school in the county town.

They received concessionary bus tickets as they live closer to the secondary school in Castlegregory.

This year, a lottery system was used to determine which Annascaul students would get seats on the bus to Tralee as there were more pupils than seats available.

Seventeen students lost out in the lottery and had to pay the full fare on the public bus service.

The concessionary school bus ticket cost €700 per year but to pay for the public bus service would cost students between around €1,000 and €1,730 annually.

Now Bus Éireann has offered a special price to the children travelling between Annascaul and Tralee.

It’s proposed students would pay €20 per week to use the public bus service, rather than the current €32.

It says it’s a temporary solution for this year only and will be reviewed thereafter and says it’s because there is available capacity on the scheduled public service.

Deputies Michael Healy-Rae and Brendan Griffin say they’ve been in talks with Bus Eireann’s CEO on the matter.

Parents are due to meet in Annascaul this evening to discuss the situation.