Page last updated at 11:05 GMT, Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Cuts may affect free school transport in Oxfordshire

A school coach (generic)
The council says few other authorities provide free school transport

Free transport to Roman Catholic schools in Oxfordshire may be stopped from next year, under plans by the county council.

The authority, which is facing severe funding pressures, estimates the measure would save £640,000 by 2015.

The proposal would not affect pupils who already receive free transport, or students starting next September.

The county council said it was not "legally obliged" to provide the services.

'Must act'

Councillor Michael Waine, council cabinet member for school improvement, said the authority was one of very few which provided such journeys.

He added: "Oxfordshire is coming into line with what other local authorities are doing.

"We are not legally obliged to do this. It is not something we would have rushed to do, but in the circumstances we are in, we have to act."

Families on certain benefits would not be affected, the county council added.

Schools affected include St Gregory the Great Catholic School in Oxford and Blessed George Napier School in Banbury.

A final decision is expected to be taken in the next few months.

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