Heads slam council's "farcical and dangerous" school bus plan

Bucks Free Press: Head teachers' anger: Stephen Noakes (JHGS), Sharon Cromie (Wycombe High) and Roy Page (RGS) Head teachers' anger: Stephen Noakes (JHGS), Sharon Cromie (Wycombe High) and Roy Page (RGS)

A COUNCIL has frozen its plans to overhaul the school transport set-up this week as fury grows among parents, headteachers and politicians.

The headteachers of Wycombe High, the Royal Grammar School and John Hampden Grammar School were united in their anger at the lack of consultation and clarity over the proposed amalgamation of school transport.

And there have been calls for Buckinghamshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Education Cllr Mike Appleyard to resign - with rival politicians calling the plans "incompetent".

Cllr Appleyard announced on Thursday that he had deferred the changes to the aforementioned schools so the county council could consult with the headteachers and parents.

County Hall wants to save £5m over four years from school transport.

Part of that could see the separate services for RGS, John Hampden and Wycombe High replaced with a joint service using 18 double-decker buses - an idea dubbed "farcical" by the heads.

John Hampden’s headteacher Stephen Noakes said: "The document suggests the plans are going ahead in consultation with heads but there has not been any such consultation. It’s derisory.

"There’s a transparent lack of understanding for what the situation on the road actually is. If you look at RGS, having 18 double-deckers pulling up on the side of Amersham Road is farcical and dangerous.

"At JHGS they refer to a lay-by which they say is not currently used - but it is used extensively every day and Stokenchurch, one of the areas we collect students from, isn’t even mentioned."

RGS head Roy Page said his boys will be dropped off at 8.10am, despite not starting school until 8.40am, with the buses tasked with getting pupils to the other schools before first lesson at 8.50am.

The RGS boys will then be forced to wait until 4.10pm - 30 minutes after their final class - before the buses finally arrive from Wycombe High.

He added: "But they won’t get here by then - and it will clog up High Wycombe.

"There’s a risk of some students being on a bus for 75minutes, not including the walk to the bus stop or home after they get off.

"We don’t know what time to expect the children in school in September or what buses they will be arriving on."

The three headteachers sent a joint letter home to all their parents urging them to petition BCC.

Wycombe High headteacher Sharon Cromie said: "Parents have been very positive with us sharing the information, they didn’t know about it and are as aggrieved as we are.

"With two weeks to go before the end of term we are informed but what can we do in the summer if we don’t know what the changes are?

"The great silence is from BCC and Mike Appleyard. It’s the lack of understanding and the impact their changes are going to have.

"Who are they consulting? You need to talk to the key people. They haven’t engaged with the school, the parents, the private bus companies or the residents."

The concern from headteachers and parents on social media prompted Cllr Appleyard into a re-think on Thursday.

He said: "It is important we listen to the concerns of parents and schools over the changes, and so we are undertaking a further review of detailed transport options for the Wycombe schools.

"I have decided we should defer the planned introduction of the more extensive transport changes for these schools to allow further engagement with schools and parents during the Autumn Term."

Cllr Appleyard added he had set up a meeting with the headteachers, that was to take place on Friday, to clarify the county’s proposals and he would write to parents following the meeting.

Wycombe Labour accused the county council of "sheer incompetence" and potentially putting the welfare of children at risk.

David Meacock, UKIP’s parliamentary candidate for Wycombe, said he thought similar proposals for schools in Amersham were "bad enough" but the Wycombe scheme was worse.

He added: "This is a disgrace. The Cabinet member should resign for even proposing such a shambles."

Comments (50)

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9:14am Sun 6 Jul 14

mistamina says...

Before we all get carried away; let us sak ourselves - Why do Grammars need so much transport?
Before we all get carried away; let us sak ourselves - Why do Grammars need so much transport? mistamina
  • Score: -8

9:58am Sun 6 Jul 14

bayriver says...

Before you comment on something learn to spell ! Have a think about what you are actually asking. This is a very serious situation for the schools, children and the parents. How can anyone expect the pupils to perform to the best of their ability when they may spend up to three hours a day travelling to and from school ! Add on top of that up to 90 minutes of homework each evening ! It is supposed to be an education system not a prison or sweathouse !
Before you comment on something learn to spell ! Have a think about what you are actually asking. This is a very serious situation for the schools, children and the parents. How can anyone expect the pupils to perform to the best of their ability when they may spend up to three hours a day travelling to and from school ! Add on top of that up to 90 minutes of homework each evening ! It is supposed to be an education system not a prison or sweathouse ! bayriver
  • Score: 16

10:24am Sun 6 Jul 14

Possum1 says...

Mike Appleyard is a dangerous, destructive man when it comes to the way he treats childrens' services. He has already decimated the Sure Start centres and now he's moving on to this, a situation which puts all at risk. Aside from the children who will now spend unacceptable amounts of time on a bus commuting to school, perhaps at the expense of after school clubs and activities, this will create hell on the roads. Imagine the road rage of drivers in those very busy areas trying to circumnavigate 18 double decker buses. Accidents are bound to increase. This mustnot be allowed to happen.
Mike Appleyard is a dangerous, destructive man when it comes to the way he treats childrens' services. He has already decimated the Sure Start centres and now he's moving on to this, a situation which puts all at risk. Aside from the children who will now spend unacceptable amounts of time on a bus commuting to school, perhaps at the expense of after school clubs and activities, this will create hell on the roads. Imagine the road rage of drivers in those very busy areas trying to circumnavigate 18 double decker buses. Accidents are bound to increase. This mustnot be allowed to happen. Possum1
  • Score: 24

10:32am Sun 6 Jul 14

Possum1 says...

What they should do is put Stephen Noakes at the head of a committee to look at any changes. I was one of his students 20 years ago, he was one of the most intelligent, forward thinking and sensible teachers I ever had.
What they should do is put Stephen Noakes at the head of a committee to look at any changes. I was one of his students 20 years ago, he was one of the most intelligent, forward thinking and sensible teachers I ever had. Possum1
  • Score: 23

11:26am Sun 6 Jul 14

mistamina says...

Sorry i am out of this debate. You lot are blinkered apologists for Grammars Schools constant quaking for more and more money.
You are unable to see the bigger picture of destruction in the County.

PS. this is debate for the improvement of services for our children, NOT a Grammar school spelling exam!
Sorry i am out of this debate. You lot are blinkered apologists for Grammars Schools constant quaking for more and more money. You are unable to see the bigger picture of destruction in the County. PS. this is debate for the improvement of services for our children, NOT a Grammar school spelling exam! mistamina
  • Score: -12

11:45am Sun 6 Jul 14

busman2009 says...

Round and round we go!

This was tried about 10 years ago and didn't work then, with the time taken to get across town making the services unreliable. With the major increase in traffic since then, why on earth do they think it will work now!
Round and round we go! This was tried about 10 years ago and didn't work then, with the time taken to get across town making the services unreliable. With the major increase in traffic since then, why on earth do they think it will work now! busman2009
  • Score: 12

6:33pm Sun 6 Jul 14

allrightnow2 says...

mistamina wrote:
Sorry i am out of this debate. You lot are blinkered apologists for Grammars Schools constant quaking for more and more money.
You are unable to see the bigger picture of destruction in the County.

PS. this is debate for the improvement of services for our children, NOT a Grammar school spelling exam!
It's actually not about Grammar schools at all. Simply about how much time it will take children to get to school and whether they'll make it on time. This could just as easily be about merging bus routes to Wye Valley and Great Marlow or Cressex and Great Marlow. PS. i'm not really sure of the relevance of your post as transport is entirely separate to school funding and WHS, RGS and JHGS are academies just the same as GMS (and Wye Valley will be) so therefore get their funding in the same way.
[quote][p][bold]mistamina[/bold] wrote: Sorry i am out of this debate. You lot are blinkered apologists for Grammars Schools constant quaking for more and more money. You are unable to see the bigger picture of destruction in the County. PS. this is debate for the improvement of services for our children, NOT a Grammar school spelling exam![/p][/quote]It's actually not about Grammar schools at all. Simply about how much time it will take children to get to school and whether they'll make it on time. This could just as easily be about merging bus routes to Wye Valley and Great Marlow or Cressex and Great Marlow. PS. i'm not really sure of the relevance of your post as transport is entirely separate to school funding and WHS, RGS and JHGS are academies just the same as GMS (and Wye Valley will be) so therefore get their funding in the same way. allrightnow2
  • Score: 15

6:34pm Sun 6 Jul 14

allrightnow2 says...

mistamina wrote:
Before we all get carried away; let us sak ourselves - Why do Grammars need so much transport?
The rules for transport to Grammar schools are exactly the same as non-Grammar schools. If it's your nearest suitable school and you live over 3 miles away then you're entitled to transport. I'm unsure which tree you're barking up.
[quote][p][bold]mistamina[/bold] wrote: Before we all get carried away; let us sak ourselves - Why do Grammars need so much transport?[/p][/quote]The rules for transport to Grammar schools are exactly the same as non-Grammar schools. If it's your nearest suitable school and you live over 3 miles away then you're entitled to transport. I'm unsure which tree you're barking up. allrightnow2
  • Score: 16

6:42pm Sun 6 Jul 14

jayeatman says...

mistamina, you should take the time to read the proposals before slamming grammar schools. Bucks CC school transport rules are applied to all schools in the County equally. Imagine you are travelling from Lane End to Handy Cross by bus. Would you choose to go via RGS crossing the centre of High Wycombe twice? That's driving through the centre of Wycombe no less than FOUR times per day. That is what they are proposing. I cannot believe this stupidity and incompetence.
mistamina, you should take the time to read the proposals before slamming grammar schools. Bucks CC school transport rules are applied to all schools in the County equally. Imagine you are travelling from Lane End to Handy Cross by bus. Would you choose to go via RGS crossing the centre of High Wycombe twice? That's driving through the centre of Wycombe no less than FOUR times per day. That is what they are proposing. I cannot believe this stupidity and incompetence. jayeatman
  • Score: 18

6:44pm Sun 6 Jul 14

jayeatman says...

IF of course you could find the proposals. They aren't on the Bucks CC website at least nowhere I could see.
IF of course you could find the proposals. They aren't on the Bucks CC website at least nowhere I could see. jayeatman
  • Score: 12

8:30pm Sun 6 Jul 14

MammaTed says...

This latest development sounds more like a justification to support their unpopular fare increase.

I first heard about these proposed route changes, not from BCC or the service provider, but in an email from my child's new school.

Why does Mike Appleyard keep saying things like "It is important we listen to the concerns of parents and schools..." when they have quite obviously failed to do so already?

It is very clear from this that BCC has failed to consult/listen to those concerned and they have carefully shaped their Transport Consultation to meet an outcome they have already decided on.
This latest development sounds more like a justification to support their unpopular fare increase. I first heard about these proposed route changes, not from BCC or the service provider, but in an email from my child's new school. Why does Mike Appleyard keep saying things like "It is important we listen to the concerns of parents and schools..." when they have quite obviously failed to do so already? It is very clear from this that BCC has failed to consult/listen to those concerned and they have carefully shaped their Transport Consultation to meet an outcome they have already decided on. MammaTed
  • Score: 16

10:54am Mon 7 Jul 14

BucksComment says...

Is this one of the fastest turn-arrounds yet?

Typical Tory policy - chuck a stupid, ill thought out plan up in the air and U-turn before it hits the ground.

Or are they just softening us up for a second proposal that will be 'not quite as bad'?
Is this one of the fastest turn-arrounds yet? Typical Tory policy - chuck a stupid, ill thought out plan up in the air and U-turn before it hits the ground. Or are they just softening us up for a second proposal that will be 'not quite as bad'? BucksComment
  • Score: 6

2:41pm Mon 7 Jul 14

MammaTed says...

BucksComment wrote:
Is this one of the fastest turn-arrounds yet?

Typical Tory policy - chuck a stupid, ill thought out plan up in the air and U-turn before it hits the ground.

Or are they just softening us up for a second proposal that will be 'not quite as bad'?
Perhaps they should have consulted properly with everyone concerned in the first place so they could make an informed decision instead of wasting time and money with their original proposal.

I had an email from the transport people today, but it is too little too late as far I am concerned and I still don't know if my child has a place or not.
[quote][p][bold]BucksComment[/bold] wrote: Is this one of the fastest turn-arrounds yet? Typical Tory policy - chuck a stupid, ill thought out plan up in the air and U-turn before it hits the ground. Or are they just softening us up for a second proposal that will be 'not quite as bad'?[/p][/quote]Perhaps they should have consulted properly with everyone concerned in the first place so they could make an informed decision instead of wasting time and money with their original proposal. I had an email from the transport people today, but it is too little too late as far I am concerned and I still don't know if my child has a place or not. MammaTed
  • Score: 1

3:07pm Mon 7 Jul 14

jayeatman says...

Dear Mr Appleyard,
I am very happy you have seen fit to implement a pause in the process, however I have several questions:
1. How is it that you thought it would ever be acceptable to introduce the proposed changes at such a late date, i.e. with less than three weeks to the end of the school year?
2. When and with whom are consultation processes in the scheme going to take place?
3. How much time was allowed for these consultations?
4. How were the proposed changes going to be made public? I note nothing was put on the BucksCC website.
5. When and how are any revisions to the proposals going to be made public?
6. When are we going to be informed how much you propose to charge us for this service?
7. How a scheme with the following features was ever thought safe, sensible and practical:
a. All buses arriving and departing JHGS/WHS at the same time and in the same direction down Marlow Hill to/From RGS.
b. A convoy of buses traversing High Wycombe Town Centre in peak hours and them some of those buses crossing back across High Wycombe once they had visited RGS.
c. All buses attempting to simultaneously drop off/pick up at RGS.
d. A scheme that vastly increases the travelling time of the majority of users of the scheme.
e. A scheme so poor that it would deter parents from using it thus inevitably driving up private car use in an already extremely congested area around JHGS/WHS.
Dear Mr Appleyard, I am very happy you have seen fit to implement a pause in the process, however I have several questions: 1. How is it that you thought it would ever be acceptable to introduce the proposed changes at such a late date, i.e. with less than three weeks to the end of the school year? 2. When and with whom are consultation processes in the scheme going to take place? 3. How much time was allowed for these consultations? 4. How were the proposed changes going to be made public? I note nothing was put on the BucksCC website. 5. When and how are any revisions to the proposals going to be made public? 6. When are we going to be informed how much you propose to charge us for this service? 7. How a scheme with the following features was ever thought safe, sensible and practical: a. All buses arriving and departing JHGS/WHS at the same time and in the same direction down Marlow Hill to/From RGS. b. A convoy of buses traversing High Wycombe Town Centre in peak hours and them some of those buses crossing back across High Wycombe once they had visited RGS. c. All buses attempting to simultaneously drop off/pick up at RGS. d. A scheme that vastly increases the travelling time of the majority of users of the scheme. e. A scheme so poor that it would deter parents from using it thus inevitably driving up private car use in an already extremely congested area around JHGS/WHS. jayeatman
  • Score: 4

3:51pm Mon 7 Jul 14

Robert.M says...

Why the uproar? the roads around these schools will still be blocked morning and afternoon`s with parents in there posh motors dropping off and picking up their little angels, stop ALL school transport, parents and kids get enough, what with child benefit and tax credits etc, let them walk to school and home, the same as I and many had to, 3mls there and 3mls home, unless the child is disabled or to young let them use shanksy`s pony, parents and kids expect and get to much these days
Why the uproar? the roads around these schools will still be blocked morning and afternoon`s with parents in there posh motors dropping off and picking up their little angels, stop ALL school transport, parents and kids get enough, what with child benefit and tax credits etc, let them walk to school and home, the same as I and many had to, 3mls there and 3mls home, unless the child is disabled or to young let them use shanksy`s pony, parents and kids expect and get to much these days Robert.M
  • Score: -10

3:54pm Mon 7 Jul 14

BucksComment says...

Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?
Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well? BucksComment
  • Score: 5

3:55pm Mon 7 Jul 14

BucksComment says...

The letter forwarded by JHGS head today from Mr Appleyard makes it very clear that this is far from over. He promises 'consultation' in the Autumn for changes still to be made in January.
The letter forwarded by JHGS head today from Mr Appleyard makes it very clear that this is far from over. He promises 'consultation' in the Autumn for changes still to be made in January. BucksComment
  • Score: 3

4:13pm Mon 7 Jul 14

wycombe-workman says...

Bunch of lies from Cllr Appleyard. These routes have already been awarded to operators to operate from sept 15. Funny how the cllr is backtracking now. Disgusting I say. Following the awarding of these routes to the contractors are BCC now going to cancel these contracts with them, if so, at what cost to the tax payer?

B.C.C have long been putting pressure on school transport services.
Bunch of lies from Cllr Appleyard. These routes have already been awarded to operators to operate from sept 15. Funny how the cllr is backtracking now. Disgusting I say. Following the awarding of these routes to the contractors are BCC now going to cancel these contracts with them, if so, at what cost to the tax payer? B.C.C have long been putting pressure on school transport services. wycombe-workman
  • Score: 2

4:26pm Mon 7 Jul 14

BucksComment says...

wycombe-workman wrote:
Bunch of lies from Cllr Appleyard. These routes have already been awarded to operators to operate from sept 15. Funny how the cllr is backtracking now. Disgusting I say. Following the awarding of these routes to the contractors are BCC now going to cancel these contracts with them, if so, at what cost to the tax payer?

B.C.C have long been putting pressure on school transport services.
Do you know this for certain?

If so then the letter I received today from Mr Appleyard seriously implicates him in fraud.
[quote][p][bold]wycombe-workman[/bold] wrote: Bunch of lies from Cllr Appleyard. These routes have already been awarded to operators to operate from sept 15. Funny how the cllr is backtracking now. Disgusting I say. Following the awarding of these routes to the contractors are BCC now going to cancel these contracts with them, if so, at what cost to the tax payer? B.C.C have long been putting pressure on school transport services.[/p][/quote]Do you know this for certain? If so then the letter I received today from Mr Appleyard seriously implicates him in fraud. BucksComment
  • Score: 2

4:28pm Mon 7 Jul 14

MammaTed says...

BucksComment wrote:
The letter forwarded by JHGS head today from Mr Appleyard makes it very clear that this is far from over. He promises 'consultation' in the Autumn for changes still to be made in January.
And then we get back to phase two in January 2015. The best bit is that Mr Appleyard also promises in his letter that he is going to listen to us too. But if he did that already why is there a need to consult everyone again?

Re the consultation, you might remember that BCC already had one in May. So what was the point of this if they need to do more? What is this company that does all these so-called consultations anyway and who works for them? Isn't this a waste of money? Ironic as BCC are trying to save money.

Public consultation - the buzz words of spin which seem to mean nothing except "we are doing this because we want you to think that you have had your concerns/opinions considered. Really we are going to ignore these and do what we wanted anyway."
[quote][p][bold]BucksComment[/bold] wrote: The letter forwarded by JHGS head today from Mr Appleyard makes it very clear that this is far from over. He promises 'consultation' in the Autumn for changes still to be made in January.[/p][/quote]And then we get back to phase two in January 2015. The best bit is that Mr Appleyard also promises in his letter that he is going to listen to us too. But if he did that already why is there a need to consult everyone again? Re the consultation, you might remember that BCC already had one in May. So what was the point of this if they need to do more? What is this company that does all these so-called consultations anyway and who works for them? Isn't this a waste of money? Ironic as BCC are trying to save money. Public consultation - the buzz words of spin which seem to mean nothing except "we are doing this because we want you to think that you have had your concerns/opinions considered. Really we are going to ignore these and do what we wanted anyway." MammaTed
  • Score: 1

4:30pm Mon 7 Jul 14

Robert.M says...

BucksComment wrote:
Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?
No born into a real world where parents only had the children they could afford and not expect handouts from government, and school transport was only for rural communities and disabled children.
[quote][p][bold]BucksComment[/bold] wrote: Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?[/p][/quote]No born into a real world where parents only had the children they could afford and not expect handouts from government, and school transport was only for rural communities and disabled children. Robert.M
  • Score: -1

4:42pm Mon 7 Jul 14

BucksComment says...

Robert.M wrote:
BucksComment wrote:
Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?
No born into a real world where parents only had the children they could afford and not expect handouts from government, and school transport was only for rural communities and disabled children.
Do you look back on rickets with the same fondness?
[quote][p][bold]Robert.M[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]BucksComment[/bold] wrote: Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?[/p][/quote]No born into a real world where parents only had the children they could afford and not expect handouts from government, and school transport was only for rural communities and disabled children.[/p][/quote]Do you look back on rickets with the same fondness? BucksComment
  • Score: 3

4:44pm Mon 7 Jul 14

MammaTed says...

Rather than using a service provider, why not contract it out to the local transport companies who would probably be able to offer a better price without having to pay for a middle-man. This would do the local economy good with the council being see to be supporting local businesses.
Rather than using a service provider, why not contract it out to the local transport companies who would probably be able to offer a better price without having to pay for a middle-man. This would do the local economy good with the council being see to be supporting local businesses. MammaTed
  • Score: 2

4:50pm Mon 7 Jul 14

jayeatman says...

A few points Robert.M may be unaware of:
1. Grammar school parents are not toffs and do not have posh motors and do not clog up the roads round Handy Cross with them. Just like other state school kids, they use the buses.
2.Anyone living within 3 miles of the schools are expected to walk or cycle, they cannot get on one of these buses.
3. For the majority of parents there is no such thing as free school transport. We pay £380 per child per year and who know what next year.
4. As all the kids affected by these proposal live over 3 miles from school a great number of them DO live in rural communities. (Well, as rural as South Bucks allows).
A few points Robert.M may be unaware of: 1. Grammar school parents are not toffs and do not have posh motors and do not clog up the roads round Handy Cross with them. Just like other state school kids, they use the buses. 2.Anyone living within 3 miles of the schools are expected to walk or cycle, they cannot get on one of these buses. 3. For the majority of parents there is no such thing as free school transport. We pay £380 per child per year and who know what next year. 4. As all the kids affected by these proposal live over 3 miles from school a great number of them DO live in rural communities. (Well, as rural as South Bucks allows). jayeatman
  • Score: 8

5:08pm Mon 7 Jul 14

MammaTed says...

Robert.M wrote:
BucksComment wrote:
Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?
No born into a real world where parents only had the children they could afford and not expect handouts from government, and school transport was only for rural communities and disabled children.
Robert M - It is not a hand out.

Most of us are taxpayers and parents and we are paying for school transport at £390, soon to be £570, per year. We don't get it free.

The real world also tends to deal you blows no matter how hard you prepare. Circumstances change.

Robert M - So you don't want your NHS dentist, hospital or doctor? Or your state pension and free bus pass either when you retire? I hope you never become unemployed or disabled because of an accident as benefits are available to people when this happens too. The government (taxpayers) pay for all of these BTW.
[quote][p][bold]Robert.M[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]BucksComment[/bold] wrote: Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?[/p][/quote]No born into a real world where parents only had the children they could afford and not expect handouts from government, and school transport was only for rural communities and disabled children.[/p][/quote]Robert M - It is not a hand out. Most of us are taxpayers and parents and we are paying for school transport at £390, soon to be £570, per year. We don't get it free. The real world also tends to deal you blows no matter how hard you prepare. Circumstances change. Robert M - So you don't want your NHS dentist, hospital or doctor? Or your state pension and free bus pass either when you retire? I hope you never become unemployed or disabled because of an accident as benefits are available to people when this happens too. The government (taxpayers) pay for all of these BTW. MammaTed
  • Score: 6

5:57pm Mon 7 Jul 14

Robert.M says...

MammaTed wrote:
Robert.M wrote:
BucksComment wrote:
Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?
No born into a real world where parents only had the children they could afford and not expect handouts from government, and school transport was only for rural communities and disabled children.
Robert M - It is not a hand out.

Most of us are taxpayers and parents and we are paying for school transport at £390, soon to be £570, per year. We don't get it free.

The real world also tends to deal you blows no matter how hard you prepare. Circumstances change.

Robert M - So you don't want your NHS dentist, hospital or doctor? Or your state pension and free bus pass either when you retire? I hope you never become unemployed or disabled because of an accident as benefits are available to people when this happens too. The government (taxpayers) pay for all of these BTW.
I agree with what you say about the NHS, Dentists etc, of which children get the benefit of as well. and as a tax payer I am already contributing towards your children, child benefit, tax credis, and free education etc, but why should my tax be used towards subsidising your child`s travel to and from school, if you think that £570 per year covers the costs of a child`s travel expense`s, to and from school then you live in a strange world, the cost of school travel is heavily subsided by local government i.e my tax.
[quote][p][bold]MammaTed[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Robert.M[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]BucksComment[/bold] wrote: Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?[/p][/quote]No born into a real world where parents only had the children they could afford and not expect handouts from government, and school transport was only for rural communities and disabled children.[/p][/quote]Robert M - It is not a hand out. Most of us are taxpayers and parents and we are paying for school transport at £390, soon to be £570, per year. We don't get it free. The real world also tends to deal you blows no matter how hard you prepare. Circumstances change. Robert M - So you don't want your NHS dentist, hospital or doctor? Or your state pension and free bus pass either when you retire? I hope you never become unemployed or disabled because of an accident as benefits are available to people when this happens too. The government (taxpayers) pay for all of these BTW.[/p][/quote]I agree with what you say about the NHS, Dentists etc, of which children get the benefit of as well. and as a tax payer I am already contributing towards your children, child benefit, tax credis, and free education etc, but why should my tax be used towards subsidising your child`s travel to and from school, if you think that £570 per year covers the costs of a child`s travel expense`s, to and from school then you live in a strange world, the cost of school travel is heavily subsided by local government i.e my tax. Robert.M
  • Score: -9

8:01pm Mon 7 Jul 14

bayriver says...

Robert.M wrote:
MammaTed wrote:
Robert.M wrote:
BucksComment wrote:
Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?
No born into a real world where parents only had the children they could afford and not expect handouts from government, and school transport was only for rural communities and disabled children.
Robert M - It is not a hand out.

Most of us are taxpayers and parents and we are paying for school transport at £390, soon to be £570, per year. We don't get it free.

The real world also tends to deal you blows no matter how hard you prepare. Circumstances change.

Robert M - So you don't want your NHS dentist, hospital or doctor? Or your state pension and free bus pass either when you retire? I hope you never become unemployed or disabled because of an accident as benefits are available to people when this happens too. The government (taxpayers) pay for all of these BTW.
I agree with what you say about the NHS, Dentists etc, of which children get the benefit of as well. and as a tax payer I am already contributing towards your children, child benefit, tax credis, and free education etc, but why should my tax be used towards subsidising your child`s travel to and from school, if you think that £570 per year covers the costs of a child`s travel expense`s, to and from school then you live in a strange world, the cost of school travel is heavily subsided by local government i.e my tax.
Tit ! Do you not realise that you were a child once, if we do not look after our education system now then we will obviously be in big trouble in years to come. Grow up, its not just about money its about safety. As im sure you are aware if you dare to take your head out of your arse that the amount of traffic on the road these days is far far greater than when you used to hike to school in all weathers with nothing more than a shirt on your back and carrying a heavy bag, you old fossil get a life ! This is a very serious matter that cannot be left to chance !
[quote][p][bold]Robert.M[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]MammaTed[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Robert.M[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]BucksComment[/bold] wrote: Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?[/p][/quote]No born into a real world where parents only had the children they could afford and not expect handouts from government, and school transport was only for rural communities and disabled children.[/p][/quote]Robert M - It is not a hand out. Most of us are taxpayers and parents and we are paying for school transport at £390, soon to be £570, per year. We don't get it free. The real world also tends to deal you blows no matter how hard you prepare. Circumstances change. Robert M - So you don't want your NHS dentist, hospital or doctor? Or your state pension and free bus pass either when you retire? I hope you never become unemployed or disabled because of an accident as benefits are available to people when this happens too. The government (taxpayers) pay for all of these BTW.[/p][/quote]I agree with what you say about the NHS, Dentists etc, of which children get the benefit of as well. and as a tax payer I am already contributing towards your children, child benefit, tax credis, and free education etc, but why should my tax be used towards subsidising your child`s travel to and from school, if you think that £570 per year covers the costs of a child`s travel expense`s, to and from school then you live in a strange world, the cost of school travel is heavily subsided by local government i.e my tax.[/p][/quote]Tit ! Do you not realise that you were a child once, if we do not look after our education system now then we will obviously be in big trouble in years to come. Grow up, its not just about money its about safety. As im sure you are aware if you dare to take your head out of your arse that the amount of traffic on the road these days is far far greater than when you used to hike to school in all weathers with nothing more than a shirt on your back and carrying a heavy bag, you old fossil get a life ! This is a very serious matter that cannot be left to chance ! bayriver
  • Score: 4

8:13pm Mon 7 Jul 14

jayeatman says...

Robert.M evidently likes to troll.
So in the same spirit: My children will get a decent education, get highly paid jobs and pay more taxes than you ever did and thus pay for your index-linked state pension, free bus pass, winter fuel allowance and free TV license (as well as their own). Maybe they will look after me in my old age as well!!!
Robert.M evidently likes to troll. So in the same spirit: My children will get a decent education, get highly paid jobs and pay more taxes than you ever did and thus pay for your index-linked state pension, free bus pass, winter fuel allowance and free TV license (as well as their own). Maybe they will look after me in my old age as well!!! jayeatman
  • Score: 1

7:42am Tue 8 Jul 14

andy40 says...

One additional thing that concerns me about Appleyard's agreement to postpone the new routes is parents could pay the £570 per child for a pass based on the existing route and journey times and then in January the new routes could be implemented. That's not a risk I am prepared to take so unfortunately come September there will be another school run car on the road. I wonder if Appleyard has read his Council's Sustainable Transport Policy because this new scheme does not support it. I have emailed him to this effect but I am only one voice, maybe many voices would be better mappleyard@buckscc.g
ov.uk
One additional thing that concerns me about Appleyard's agreement to postpone the new routes is parents could pay the £570 per child for a pass based on the existing route and journey times and then in January the new routes could be implemented. That's not a risk I am prepared to take so unfortunately come September there will be another school run car on the road. I wonder if Appleyard has read his Council's Sustainable Transport Policy because this new scheme does not support it. I have emailed him to this effect but I am only one voice, maybe many voices would be better mappleyard@buckscc.g ov.uk andy40
  • Score: 1

8:49am Tue 8 Jul 14

BucksComment says...

andy40 - I've done the same, along the same grounds.

JH web site has a full list of contacts if you want to email your concerns:

http://web.jhgs.buck
s.sch.uk/SiteAssets/
SitePages/Transport%
20changes/Contact%20
details%20for%20BCC.
pdf
andy40 - I've done the same, along the same grounds. JH web site has a full list of contacts if you want to email your concerns: http://web.jhgs.buck s.sch.uk/SiteAssets/ SitePages/Transport% 20changes/Contact%20 details%20for%20BCC. pdf BucksComment
  • Score: 2

1:11pm Tue 8 Jul 14

jayeatman says...

Dear Parent/Guardian,

I am writing to you to say that I met the Heads of John Hampden GS, RGS and Wycombe HS on Friday, and the Head of St. Michaels today. We have composed a letter which will be addressed to all parents at the schools and I hope it will go out today.

The Heads and I are in discussion about my plans to maintain the school bus service as it will be delivered at the start of next term (phase one), much as it has been this year. Copies of those routes have gone to Heads, and meetings will be held on Wednesday to look through them in order to address any difficulties.

This email is addressed to all parents who have written to me or the council. I am working through the questions you have asked in your emails, and will be responding to those that affect the start of term first. You may find the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) useful. These are on the council web site and will be regularly updated. We will add your email address to the distribution list so that you automatically receive the updates. Should you know of any other parents that wish to receive updates then they should email schooltransport@buck
scc.gov.uk with the subject line of 'updates' and they will then receive a notification when the webpage is updated with new content.

Most of the outstanding questions concern phase two which will be implemented in January 2015 (following consultations in the Autumn term and revision where necessary).

I propose to deal with your questions concerning phase two at the public meetings during the Autumn term.

Some of you have also asked about whether there will still be possible to pay termly or half-termly and I can confirm that these options will continue to be available.

I look forward to meeting you in September to discuss the changes that I propose to make in January.

Yours Sincerely

Mike Appleyard
Dear Parent/Guardian, I am writing to you to say that I met the Heads of John Hampden GS, RGS and Wycombe HS on Friday, and the Head of St. Michaels today. We have composed a letter which will be addressed to all parents at the schools and I hope it will go out today. The Heads and I are in discussion about my plans to maintain the school bus service as it will be delivered at the start of next term (phase one), much as it has been this year. Copies of those routes have gone to Heads, and meetings will be held on Wednesday to look through them in order to address any difficulties. This email is addressed to all parents who have written to me or the council. I am working through the questions you have asked in your emails, and will be responding to those that affect the start of term first. You may find the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) useful. These are on the council web site and will be regularly updated. We will add your email address to the distribution list so that you automatically receive the updates. Should you know of any other parents that wish to receive updates then they should email schooltransport@buck scc.gov.uk with the subject line of 'updates' and they will then receive a notification when the webpage is updated with new content. Most of the outstanding questions concern phase two which will be implemented in January 2015 (following consultations in the Autumn term and revision where necessary). I propose to deal with your questions concerning phase two at the public meetings during the Autumn term. Some of you have also asked about whether there will still be possible to pay termly or half-termly and I can confirm that these options will continue to be available. I look forward to meeting you in September to discuss the changes that I propose to make in January. Yours Sincerely Mike Appleyard jayeatman
  • Score: -3

1:13pm Tue 8 Jul 14

jayeatman says...

So 'Phase 1' is 'much as it has been this year'.
Doesn't fill me with confidence!
So 'Phase 1' is 'much as it has been this year'. Doesn't fill me with confidence! jayeatman
  • Score: 1

3:10pm Tue 8 Jul 14

andy40 says...

jayeatman wrote:
Dear Parent/Guardian,

I am writing to you to say that I met the Heads of John Hampden GS, RGS and Wycombe HS on Friday, and the Head of St. Michaels today. We have composed a letter which will be addressed to all parents at the schools and I hope it will go out today.

The Heads and I are in discussion about my plans to maintain the school bus service as it will be delivered at the start of next term (phase one), much as it has been this year. Copies of those routes have gone to Heads, and meetings will be held on Wednesday to look through them in order to address any difficulties.

This email is addressed to all parents who have written to me or the council. I am working through the questions you have asked in your emails, and will be responding to those that affect the start of term first. You may find the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) useful. These are on the council web site and will be regularly updated. We will add your email address to the distribution list so that you automatically receive the updates. Should you know of any other parents that wish to receive updates then they should email schooltransport@buck

scc.gov.uk with the subject line of 'updates' and they will then receive a notification when the webpage is updated with new content.

Most of the outstanding questions concern phase two which will be implemented in January 2015 (following consultations in the Autumn term and revision where necessary).

I propose to deal with your questions concerning phase two at the public meetings during the Autumn term.

Some of you have also asked about whether there will still be possible to pay termly or half-termly and I can confirm that these options will continue to be available.

I look forward to meeting you in September to discuss the changes that I propose to make in January.

Yours Sincerely

Mike Appleyard
"Most of the outstanding questions concern phase two which will be implemented in January 2015 (following consultations in the Autumn term and revision where necessary).

I propose to deal with your questions concerning phase two at the public meetings during the Autumn term."

Unfortunately by the time the concerns regarding Phase 2 are discussed in the Autumn term, parents will have either already forked out £570 for a service that will be materially different in January or will have made other arrangements i.e. decided to drive their children by car. Any consultation needs to happen now before the schools break up, not after the start of the next school year.
[quote][p][bold]jayeatman[/bold] wrote: Dear Parent/Guardian, I am writing to you to say that I met the Heads of John Hampden GS, RGS and Wycombe HS on Friday, and the Head of St. Michaels today. We have composed a letter which will be addressed to all parents at the schools and I hope it will go out today. The Heads and I are in discussion about my plans to maintain the school bus service as it will be delivered at the start of next term (phase one), much as it has been this year. Copies of those routes have gone to Heads, and meetings will be held on Wednesday to look through them in order to address any difficulties. This email is addressed to all parents who have written to me or the council. I am working through the questions you have asked in your emails, and will be responding to those that affect the start of term first. You may find the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) useful. These are on the council web site and will be regularly updated. We will add your email address to the distribution list so that you automatically receive the updates. Should you know of any other parents that wish to receive updates then they should email schooltransport@buck scc.gov.uk with the subject line of 'updates' and they will then receive a notification when the webpage is updated with new content. Most of the outstanding questions concern phase two which will be implemented in January 2015 (following consultations in the Autumn term and revision where necessary). I propose to deal with your questions concerning phase two at the public meetings during the Autumn term. Some of you have also asked about whether there will still be possible to pay termly or half-termly and I can confirm that these options will continue to be available. I look forward to meeting you in September to discuss the changes that I propose to make in January. Yours Sincerely Mike Appleyard[/p][/quote]"Most of the outstanding questions concern phase two which will be implemented in January 2015 (following consultations in the Autumn term and revision where necessary). I propose to deal with your questions concerning phase two at the public meetings during the Autumn term." Unfortunately by the time the concerns regarding Phase 2 are discussed in the Autumn term, parents will have either already forked out £570 for a service that will be materially different in January or will have made other arrangements i.e. decided to drive their children by car. Any consultation needs to happen now before the schools break up, not after the start of the next school year. andy40
  • Score: 1

3:17pm Tue 8 Jul 14

jayeatman says...

andy40 You can pay termly so could bale out at Christmas. It's certainly what we'd probably do.
andy40 You can pay termly so could bale out at Christmas. It's certainly what we'd probably do. jayeatman
  • Score: 1

4:11pm Tue 8 Jul 14

BucksComment says...

This is a sad day - a great part of growing up is getting the bus or walking to school and learning to interact with others rather than being a spoilt little brat who gets ferried everywhere.

Over £1k per year (and don't forget we are talking 40 weeks only here) is outrageous for a typical family of 2 kids.
This is a sad day - a great part of growing up is getting the bus or walking to school and learning to interact with others rather than being a spoilt little brat who gets ferried everywhere. Over £1k per year (and don't forget we are talking 40 weeks only here) is outrageous for a typical family of 2 kids. BucksComment
  • Score: 4

6:10pm Tue 8 Jul 14

MammaTed says...

jayeatman wrote:
andy40 You can pay termly so could bale out at Christmas. It's certainly what we'd probably do.
Jayeatman - That's all very well, but it this depends on the new service being ready to go in January 2015. Remember this new scheme was supposed to start in September 2014, not January 2015.
[quote][p][bold]jayeatman[/bold] wrote: andy40 You can pay termly so could bale out at Christmas. It's certainly what we'd probably do.[/p][/quote]Jayeatman - That's all very well, but it this depends on the new service being ready to go in January 2015. Remember this new scheme was supposed to start in September 2014, not January 2015. MammaTed
  • Score: 1

6:35pm Tue 8 Jul 14

MammaTed says...

Just some numbers:
Suppose you wanted to privately hire an 80 seater double decker for a school run? You will be charged around £160 per day or £19,200 a year (based on 120 school days a year).

So lets compare this with the new proposed cost:
Charging 80 children £570 equals £45,600. This is £26,400 extra per bus (or £330 per child). With 18 busses that would total £475,200 extra!

So lets ask how many people it would take to administer this?
Using the average wage of £26,000, if we had £475,200 it would pay for 18 people. Say 10 people were to run it instead, that would mean you stand to make £215,200 a year by charging £570 per child.

If BCC want to save money, why not book busses directly with the transport suppliers, cutting out the expensive middleman altogether, and simply recharge the cost plus an admin fee (say £390 or £330 plus £60) back to parents? That is £4,800 per bus in admin charges or £86,400 for 18 busses.

Use local, recharge and save money. Or is that too simplistic? If BCC don't want to do it, maybe the schools could as they know how many pupils they have and where they come from. The transport companies would be able to advise on routes and where schools might want to consider sharing too. The extra £4,800 would be useful too.
Just some numbers: Suppose you wanted to privately hire an 80 seater double decker for a school run? You will be charged around £160 per day or £19,200 a year (based on 120 school days a year). So lets compare this with the new proposed cost: Charging 80 children £570 equals £45,600. This is £26,400 extra per bus (or £330 per child). With 18 busses that would total £475,200 extra! So lets ask how many people it would take to administer this? Using the average wage of £26,000, if we had £475,200 it would pay for 18 people. Say 10 people were to run it instead, that would mean you stand to make £215,200 a year by charging £570 per child. If BCC want to save money, why not book busses directly with the transport suppliers, cutting out the expensive middleman altogether, and simply recharge the cost plus an admin fee (say £390 or £330 plus £60) back to parents? That is £4,800 per bus in admin charges or £86,400 for 18 busses. Use local, recharge and save money. Or is that too simplistic? If BCC don't want to do it, maybe the schools could as they know how many pupils they have and where they come from. The transport companies would be able to advise on routes and where schools might want to consider sharing too. The extra £4,800 would be useful too. MammaTed
  • Score: 2

6:46pm Tue 8 Jul 14

MammaTed says...

LOL know I've got the number of school days wrong, but hopefully you get the drift..
LOL know I've got the number of school days wrong, but hopefully you get the drift.. MammaTed
  • Score: 1

1:35am Wed 9 Jul 14

JOHNHEALY says...

If these headteachers do not like the new arrangements the council are wanting to put in place with a view to saving money then I suggest to them that they organise the transport and charge the parents accordingly. This way everyone gets what they want.
If these headteachers do not like the new arrangements the council are wanting to put in place with a view to saving money then I suggest to them that they organise the transport and charge the parents accordingly. This way everyone gets what they want. JOHNHEALY
  • Score: 6

12:20am Thu 10 Jul 14

mouslem says...

My Sister has already taken her son off the school coach to DCGS. He now gets the train from Gt. Missenden to Amersham - marginally more money.
The contracted private bus company been promising lockable petrol caps for over 1yr - but these have not materialised and buses frequently break down because thieves have taken petrol out of their tanks.
The buses used are very old and in a bad state. Final straw came when she had to flag down the driver to stop the coach which was leaning heavily to one side because of several flat tyres.
Childrens' safety must be the no.1 priority - Cutting money is great but not at a greater cost !
My Sister has already taken her son off the school coach to DCGS. He now gets the train from Gt. Missenden to Amersham - marginally more money. The contracted private bus company been promising lockable petrol caps for over 1yr - but these have not materialised and buses frequently break down because thieves have taken petrol out of their tanks. The buses used are very old and in a bad state. Final straw came when she had to flag down the driver to stop the coach which was leaning heavily to one side because of several flat tyres. Childrens' safety must be the no.1 priority - Cutting money is great but not at a greater cost ! mouslem
  • Score: 2

11:00am Thu 10 Jul 14

FLiszt says...

MammaTed wrote:
Just some numbers:
Suppose you wanted to privately hire an 80 seater double decker for a school run? You will be charged around £160 per day or £19,200 a year (based on 120 school days a year).

So lets compare this with the new proposed cost:
Charging 80 children £570 equals £45,600. This is £26,400 extra per bus (or £330 per child). With 18 busses that would total £475,200 extra!

So lets ask how many people it would take to administer this?
Using the average wage of £26,000, if we had £475,200 it would pay for 18 people. Say 10 people were to run it instead, that would mean you stand to make £215,200 a year by charging £570 per child.

If BCC want to save money, why not book busses directly with the transport suppliers, cutting out the expensive middleman altogether, and simply recharge the cost plus an admin fee (say £390 or £330 plus £60) back to parents? That is £4,800 per bus in admin charges or £86,400 for 18 busses.

Use local, recharge and save money. Or is that too simplistic? If BCC don't want to do it, maybe the schools could as they know how many pupils they have and where they come from. The transport companies would be able to advise on routes and where schools might want to consider sharing too. The extra £4,800 would be useful too.
Let's work through the above with 120 days p.a. corrected to 36 weeks @ 5 days = 180 days p.a..

An 80 seater @ £160 ( = £2 / child/day) would then cost £28,800 p.a.. As the current £390/U16 child charge totals £31,200 p.a., that's already a surplus of £2,400 per bus.

The £570 charge - resulting from the outrageous un-consulted-upon 46% increase - will bring in £45,600, giving a per bus surplus of £16,800, which for the 19 High Wycombe buses will be £319,200.

It would appear that the schools should come together and run their own private service, sharing a handsomely paid full time administrator - which will allow BCC to shed some more staff too!

Working the costs/charges backwards, £38K administrator salary and office costs divided among 19 buses would be £2K a bus cost to add to the actual £28,800 bus cost, making a total of £30,800. Divided by 80, this would require £385 per pupil p.a.. Adding a 10% contingency to allow for not being able to fully fill every 80 seater would still be only £423-50 p.a. per pupil as compared with the BCC proposed £570.

When I was at DCGS most buses were 48 or 52 seaters which would obviously be more expensive per pupil than 80 seaters but also likely reduce the length of journey for everyone, But the cost comparisons surely show there must be better alternatives than currently proposed even using a mix of the 48/52 seater buses.

It sounds as if the immortal "could do better" applies to BCC.
[quote][p][bold]MammaTed[/bold] wrote: Just some numbers: Suppose you wanted to privately hire an 80 seater double decker for a school run? You will be charged around £160 per day or £19,200 a year (based on 120 school days a year). So lets compare this with the new proposed cost: Charging 80 children £570 equals £45,600. This is £26,400 extra per bus (or £330 per child). With 18 busses that would total £475,200 extra! So lets ask how many people it would take to administer this? Using the average wage of £26,000, if we had £475,200 it would pay for 18 people. Say 10 people were to run it instead, that would mean you stand to make £215,200 a year by charging £570 per child. If BCC want to save money, why not book busses directly with the transport suppliers, cutting out the expensive middleman altogether, and simply recharge the cost plus an admin fee (say £390 or £330 plus £60) back to parents? That is £4,800 per bus in admin charges or £86,400 for 18 busses. Use local, recharge and save money. Or is that too simplistic? If BCC don't want to do it, maybe the schools could as they know how many pupils they have and where they come from. The transport companies would be able to advise on routes and where schools might want to consider sharing too. The extra £4,800 would be useful too.[/p][/quote]Let's work through the above with 120 days p.a. corrected to 36 weeks @ 5 days = 180 days p.a.. An 80 seater @ £160 ( = £2 / child/day) would then cost £28,800 p.a.. As the current £390/U16 child charge totals £31,200 p.a., that's already a surplus of £2,400 per bus. The £570 charge - resulting from the outrageous un-consulted-upon 46% increase - will bring in £45,600, giving a per bus surplus of £16,800, which for the 19 High Wycombe buses will be £319,200. It would appear that the schools should come together and run their own private service, sharing a handsomely paid full time administrator - which will allow BCC to shed some more staff too! Working the costs/charges backwards, £38K administrator salary and office costs divided among 19 buses would be £2K a bus cost to add to the actual £28,800 bus cost, making a total of £30,800. Divided by 80, this would require £385 per pupil p.a.. Adding a 10% contingency to allow for not being able to fully fill every 80 seater would still be only £423-50 p.a. per pupil as compared with the BCC proposed £570. When I was at DCGS most buses were 48 or 52 seaters which would obviously be more expensive per pupil than 80 seaters but also likely reduce the length of journey for everyone, But the cost comparisons surely show there must be better alternatives than currently proposed even using a mix of the 48/52 seater buses. It sounds as if the immortal "could do better" applies to BCC. FLiszt
  • Score: 1

1:25pm Thu 10 Jul 14

MammaTed says...

Thanks FLiszt. I don't know why I thought it was 120 days.

I had worked it out before when the new fare was first announced, as I couldn't believe how outrageously expensive it had become and how the increase could have possibly been justified. I noticed that the old charge of £390 was more a accurate and reasonable charge and increasing it to £570 seemed to be overly high when compared with public transport.

I do believe that if BCC want to make a saving then they don't farm it out to a company like Amey who is obviously going to pay the cheapest price to the transport companies they can and charge the highest back to BCC who will then have to recharge it (plus extra) to parents.

You will also notice that only the 80 seater busses are being used, which is where the biggest surplus is, as the single decker 60 seaters cost the same as the 80 seaters.
Thanks FLiszt. I don't know why I thought it was 120 days. I had worked it out before when the new fare was first announced, as I couldn't believe how outrageously expensive it had become and how the increase could have possibly been justified. I noticed that the old charge of £390 was more a accurate and reasonable charge and increasing it to £570 seemed to be overly high when compared with public transport. I do believe that if BCC want to make a saving then they don't farm it out to a company like Amey who is obviously going to pay the cheapest price to the transport companies they can and charge the highest back to BCC who will then have to recharge it (plus extra) to parents. You will also notice that only the 80 seater busses are being used, which is where the biggest surplus is, as the single decker 60 seaters cost the same as the 80 seaters. MammaTed
  • Score: 0

10:05am Fri 11 Jul 14

mistamina says...

BucksComment wrote:
Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?
A tad unfair on Robert M!
[quote][p][bold]BucksComment[/bold] wrote: Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?[/p][/quote]A tad unfair on Robert M! mistamina
  • Score: 0

10:18am Fri 11 Jul 14

jayeatman says...

mistamina wrote:
BucksComment wrote:
Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?
A tad unfair on Robert M!
Not a Monty Python fan then?
[quote][p][bold]mistamina[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]BucksComment[/bold] wrote: Robert M - Did you live at the bottom of a lake as well?[/p][/quote]A tad unfair on Robert M![/p][/quote]Not a Monty Python fan then? jayeatman
  • Score: 0

6:36pm Tue 15 Jul 14

Lawrence Anthony Linehan says...

mistamina wrote:
Before we all get carried away; let us sak ourselves - Why do Grammars need so much transport?
When I saw this report I thought: ‘why are they only quoting grammar school heads and pupils’ families?’ Then I thought of the answer to my own question and yours – people don’t need bussing in from miles around to, often failing, secondary moderns – they are usually just around the corner. People need bussing away from them.

A good example of this is at Bourne End railway station on school day mornings - a short distance from Mike Appleyard’s home and the school where he was Head of the Governors when it went into special measures - on schooldays you can see dozens of kids waiting to catch the train over the Thames to a decent education in the much-despised (in Buckinghamshire Conservative circles) comprehensive schools in the next county.
[quote][p][bold]mistamina[/bold] wrote: Before we all get carried away; let us sak ourselves - Why do Grammars need so much transport?[/p][/quote]When I saw this report I thought: ‘why are they only quoting grammar school heads and pupils’ families?’ Then I thought of the answer to my own question and yours – people don’t need bussing in from miles around to, often failing, secondary moderns – they are usually just around the corner. People need bussing [italic]away [/italic]from them. A good example of this is at Bourne End railway station on school day mornings - a short distance from Mike Appleyard’s home and the school where he was Head of the Governors when it went into special measures - on schooldays you can see dozens of kids waiting to catch the train over the Thames to a decent education in the much-despised (in Buckinghamshire Conservative circles) comprehensive schools in the next county. Lawrence Anthony Linehan
  • Score: 2

5:02pm Fri 18 Jul 14

Lawrence Anthony Linehan says...

The reasoning – sorry ‘reasoning’ - processes of right wing political people in Bucks often makes me shake my head:

David Meacock, UKIP’s parliamentary candidate for Wycombe … added: "This is a disgrace. The Cabinet member should resign for even proposing such a shambles."

The Cabinet member referred to can only be Mike Appleyard (‘BCC Cabinet Member for Education and Training’). In February 2012, in an attempt originally to get to basic principles in the long-running controversy over ‘selection’ in Bucks I emailed Mr Appleyard and asked why this county supported the 11+ with the expectation I would receive enlightening insights and data that might change my opinions. Since then I have been engaged in a correspondence with him with a very long gap during which I occasionally asked him to send me the reply he had promised me to some very straightforward questions about statements he had first made to me. Mike (and other local Conservatives, like Val Letheren) tends to avoid making statements explaining or justifying ‘selection’ in public. (At one time Mike was available on a BFP internet video refusing to discuss the 11+ at a public meeting) and I have quoted some of the correspondence here in the past – I do not want to be unpleasant personally to anyone, but Mike has maintained support for a system that is desperately unfair to about two-thirds of our children since the 1970s. In my view the statements Mike has made to me are misleadingly vague, tend to contradict each other and employ at best debatable statistics and statements. He also seems not to have at his immediate disposal basic facts about the education system in this county and others – like the names of other education authorities that are comparable with Bucks and which he refers to in his correspondence. (I am willing to publish all the correspondence on here– after all it is not private if the Cabinet member for education discusses the education system he is responsible for with an elector in the county.) To my mind Mike is clearly trying to brush off questions and criticisms with a barrage of plausible statistical waffle and saying he is a ‘fan’ of selection as if ‘selection’ is a matter of taste that cannot be proven or disproven. He seems to believe that a system in which every Secondary Modern School inspected in Bucks in the past three years has been placed in Special Measure or Requires Improvement contains: ‘areas where we can make the transition from 'very good' to 'better' (see: http://www.bucksfree
press.co.uk/educatio
n/news/11108724.Prop
osals_to_close_educa
tional_gap_between_r
ich_and_poor/)
This week Michael Wilshaw criticised school governors who do nothing to help schools in difficulties. I have said on here before now that Mike who was and is BCC Cabinet Member for Education and Training should have resigned from that post when he was the governor of a school that was taken into special measures.

The only thing obviously true that Mike has said to me during our correspondence is that people ‘support selection’. Mike has said he has seen people who do this, so this does not simply mean they support it when they vote for the Conservative candidates in local elections as ‘selection’ is part of the Conservative platform in this county. (Though I doubt this - I suspect that if for some reason Bucks Conservative party were to introduce a subsidy for cabbage growing in north Buckinghamshire then Conservative voters would shrug their shoulders and vote ‘in support’ of the cabbage growing subsidy too.)
Educational ‘selection’ is really a societal or educational matter and I regret that this has been made into a political issue by the dogmatism of Bucks Conservatives like Mike.

I said: Bucks Conservatives like Mike - I would point out though that Mike is not the only person in Bucks Conservatives who treats the majority of parents with what amounts to a contemptuous public silence - Val Letheren has refused to respond to criticisms from Wycombe Labour Party on the laughable grounds that they make her ‘cross’:


… secretary of Wycombe Labour Mark Ferris has written to Val Letheren, chairman of the education, skills and children’s services select committee, … Mrs Letheren told the Bucks Herald she was ‘fuming mad’ to read the letter, began writing a response but decided not to send it.

She said: “I don’t think they deserve a message … I was so cross … They should read the report properly … Mrs Letheren said the overall aim of the report has been successful …

(see:
http://www.buckshera
ld.co.uk/news/more-n
ews/education-report
-slammed-as-superfic
ial-but-its-author-i
s-left-fuming-mad-1-
6019492?)

The so-called ‘selective’ system is desperately unfair and is assisted by its supporters in deceitful ways as we saw in the misleading public statements some months ago over the ‘new’ and ’improved’ coaching-proof 11+. Bucks County Council Education Committee members seem unable to explain why they are supporters of ‘selection’ and as I said above Mike Appleyard has actually been the head governor at Wye Valley School when it went into ‘special measures’.

So was David Meacock, UKIP’s parliamentary candidate for Wycombe, provoked by Mr Wilshaw’s comments referred to above, into making this criticism of Mike Appleyard and calling for his resignation … or was he speaking in response to the obvious irrationality and unfairness of Bucks Education system … or because Mike and his fellow Conservatives are unable to make a rational justification for the system they support by fair means and foul?

No – he is doing it because Mike has apparently messed up a bus timetable.

The reasoning processes of right wing political people in Bucks makes me shake my head.
The reasoning – sorry ‘reasoning’ - processes of right wing political people in Bucks often makes me shake my head: [italic]David Meacock, UKIP’s parliamentary candidate for Wycombe … added: "This is a disgrace. The Cabinet member should resign for even proposing such a shambles." [/italic] The Cabinet member referred to can only be Mike Appleyard (‘BCC Cabinet Member for Education and Training’). In February 2012, in an attempt originally to get to basic principles in the long-running controversy over ‘selection’ in Bucks I emailed Mr Appleyard and asked why this county supported the 11+ with the expectation I would receive enlightening insights and data that might change my opinions. Since then I have been engaged in a correspondence with him with a very long gap during which I occasionally asked him to send me the reply he had promised me to some very straightforward questions about statements he had first made to me. Mike (and other local Conservatives, like Val Letheren) tends to avoid making statements explaining or justifying ‘selection’ in public. (At one time Mike was available on a BFP internet video refusing to discuss the 11+ at a public meeting) and I have quoted some of the correspondence here in the past – I do not want to be unpleasant personally to anyone, but Mike has maintained support for a system that is desperately unfair to about two-thirds of our children since the 1970s. In my view the statements Mike has made to me are misleadingly vague, tend to contradict each other and employ at best debatable statistics and statements. He also seems not to have at his immediate disposal basic facts about the education system in this county and others – like the names of other education authorities that are comparable with Bucks and which he refers to in his correspondence. (I am willing to publish all the correspondence on here– after all it is not private if the Cabinet member for education discusses the education system he is responsible for with an elector in the county.) To my mind Mike is clearly trying to brush off questions and criticisms with a barrage of plausible statistical waffle and saying he is a ‘fan’ of selection as if ‘selection’ is a matter of taste that cannot be proven or disproven. He seems to believe that a system in which every Secondary Modern School inspected in Bucks in the past three years has been placed in Special Measure or Requires Improvement contains: ‘areas where we can make the transition from 'very good' to 'better' (see: http://www.bucksfree press.co.uk/educatio n/news/11108724.Prop osals_to_close_educa tional_gap_between_r ich_and_poor/) This week Michael Wilshaw criticised school governors who do nothing to help schools in difficulties. I have said on here before now that Mike who was and is BCC Cabinet Member for Education and Training should have resigned from that post when he was the governor of a school that was taken into special measures. The only thing obviously true that Mike has said to me during our correspondence is that people ‘support selection’. Mike has said he has seen people who do this, so this does not simply mean they support it when they vote for the Conservative candidates in local elections as ‘selection’ is part of the Conservative platform in this county. (Though I doubt this - I suspect that if for some reason Bucks Conservative party were to introduce a subsidy for cabbage growing in north Buckinghamshire then Conservative voters would shrug their shoulders and vote ‘in support’ of the cabbage growing subsidy too.) Educational ‘selection’ is really a societal or educational matter and I regret that this has been made into a political issue by the dogmatism of Bucks Conservatives like Mike. I said: [italic] Bucks Conservatives like Mike [/italic] - I would point out though that Mike is not the only person in Bucks Conservatives who treats the majority of parents with what amounts to a contemptuous public silence - Val Letheren has refused to respond to criticisms from Wycombe Labour Party on the laughable grounds that they make her ‘cross’: [italic] … secretary of Wycombe Labour Mark Ferris has written to Val Letheren, chairman of the education, skills and children’s services select committee, … Mrs Letheren told the Bucks Herald she was ‘fuming mad’ to read the letter, began writing a response but decided not to send it. She said: “I don’t think they deserve a message … I was so cross … They should read the report properly … Mrs Letheren said the overall aim of the report has been successful … [/italic] (see: http://www.buckshera ld.co.uk/news/more-n ews/education-report -slammed-as-superfic ial-but-its-author-i s-left-fuming-mad-1- 6019492?) The so-called ‘selective’ system is desperately unfair and is assisted by its supporters in deceitful ways as we saw in the misleading public statements some months ago over the ‘new’ and ’improved’ coaching-proof 11+. Bucks County Council Education Committee members seem unable to explain why they are supporters of ‘selection’ and as I said above Mike Appleyard has actually been the head governor at Wye Valley School when it went into ‘special measures’. So was David Meacock, UKIP’s parliamentary candidate for Wycombe, provoked by Mr Wilshaw’s comments referred to above, into making this criticism of Mike Appleyard and calling for his resignation … or was he speaking in response to the obvious irrationality and unfairness of Bucks Education system … or because Mike and his fellow Conservatives are unable to make a rational justification for the system they support by fair means and foul? No – he is doing it because Mike has apparently messed up a bus timetable. The reasoning processes of right wing political people in Bucks makes me shake my head. Lawrence Anthony Linehan
  • Score: 3

5:04pm Fri 18 Jul 14

Lawrence Anthony Linehan says...

As we are on the subject of the reasoning processes of right wing Buckinghamshire politicians I would be interested to hear or read David Meacock, UKIP’s parliamentary candidate for Wycombe, explain why hisparty supports the 11+.

Please don’t bring out any chestnuts about ‘freedom of choice’ - we all know the exam is compulsory and failure means a second-class education. Or any stuff about local working-class lads and lasses passing the 11+ and becoming the first person in their family to go to university and become a brain surgeon or whatever - there is a wealth of evidence to show that grammar schools are citadels for the advantaged and aspirational, and not even the local advantaged and aspirational any longer. Nor any rubbish about ‘selection’ being necessary to attain ‘excellence’ - Lord Plant the Head of KCL Law School failed the 11+ and Andrew Dilnot, former principal of St Hugh's College, Oxford, and pro vice-chancellor of the university, went to a comprehensive school, to say nothing of William Hague.
If you were to say, like Mike Appleyard, that people voted for it you would be on truthful ground, but how many people have an informed understanding of how the system works and its alternatives? How many people realise there is a varying standard required to pass the exam each year for example?


Professor David Jesson in October 2010 in an article about comprehensive schools said:
The fact that most pupils are unaffected by this ideological divide, and that many areas have well established and effective systems of comprehensive education has not lessened the acrimony. This has also had important political ramifications with the issue providing clear blue water between the major parties.

Am I right in thinking that UKIP supports ‘selection’ basically to reassure Conservative voters that the good ship UKIP is in reassuringly blue water just like themselves or are you able to produce a rational justification for the 11+ in a manner that eludes Mr Appleyard and his ideological comrades?
As we are on the subject of the reasoning processes of right wing Buckinghamshire politicians I would be interested to hear or read David Meacock, UKIP’s parliamentary candidate for Wycombe, explain why [italic]his[/italic]party supports the 11+. Please don’t bring out any chestnuts about ‘freedom of choice’ - we all know the exam is compulsory and failure means a second-class education. Or any stuff about local working-class lads and lasses passing the 11+ and becoming the first person in their family to go to university and become a brain surgeon or whatever - there is a wealth of evidence to show that grammar schools are citadels for the advantaged and aspirational, and not even the local advantaged and aspirational any longer. Nor any rubbish about ‘selection’ being necessary to attain ‘excellence’ - Lord Plant the Head of KCL Law School failed the 11+ and Andrew Dilnot, former principal of St Hugh's College, Oxford, and pro vice-chancellor of the university, went to a comprehensive school, to say nothing of William Hague. If you were to say, like Mike Appleyard, that people voted for it you would be on truthful ground, but how many people have an informed understanding of how the system works and its alternatives? How many people realise there is a varying standard required to pass the exam each year for example? Professor David Jesson in October 2010 in an article about comprehensive schools said: [italic] The fact that most pupils are unaffected by this ideological divide, and that many areas have well established and effective systems of comprehensive education has not lessened the acrimony. This has also had important political ramifications with the issue providing clear blue water between the major parties. [/italic] Am I right in thinking that UKIP supports ‘selection’ basically to reassure Conservative voters that the good ship UKIP is in reassuringly blue water just like themselves or are [italic] you [/italic] able to produce a rational justification for the 11+ in a manner that eludes Mr Appleyard and his ideological comrades? Lawrence Anthony Linehan
  • Score: 3

5:09pm Fri 18 Jul 14

Lawrence Anthony Linehan says...

Wycombe High headteacher Sharon Cromie said: ... "The great silence is from BCC and Mike Appleyard. It’s the lack of understanding and the impact their changes are going to have."

This is typical of the whole way education is treated in this county and symptomatic of a deeper underlying attitude.

If Mike and his comrades are unable to explain basic facts about the system here then arranging a bus timetable would require peactical and intellectual skills well beyond their capacities.
Wycombe High headteacher Sharon Cromie said: ... "The great silence is from BCC and Mike Appleyard. It’s the lack of understanding and the impact their changes are going to have." This is typical of the whole way education is treated in this county and symptomatic of a deeper underlying attitude. If Mike and his comrades are unable to explain basic facts about the system here then arranging a bus timetable would require peactical and intellectual skills well beyond their capacities. Lawrence Anthony Linehan
  • Score: 1

11:11am Sat 19 Jul 14

mistamina says...

Lawrence Anthony Linehan wrote:
As we are on the subject of the reasoning processes of right wing Buckinghamshire politicians I would be interested to hear or read David Meacock, UKIP’s parliamentary candidate for Wycombe, explain why hisparty supports the 11+.

Please don’t bring out any chestnuts about ‘freedom of choice’ - we all know the exam is compulsory and failure means a second-class education. Or any stuff about local working-class lads and lasses passing the 11+ and becoming the first person in their family to go to university and become a brain surgeon or whatever - there is a wealth of evidence to show that grammar schools are citadels for the advantaged and aspirational, and not even the local advantaged and aspirational any longer. Nor any rubbish about ‘selection’ being necessary to attain ‘excellence’ - Lord Plant the Head of KCL Law School failed the 11+ and Andrew Dilnot, former principal of St Hugh's College, Oxford, and pro vice-chancellor of the university, went to a comprehensive school, to say nothing of William Hague.
If you were to say, like Mike Appleyard, that people voted for it you would be on truthful ground, but how many people have an informed understanding of how the system works and its alternatives? How many people realise there is a varying standard required to pass the exam each year for example?


Professor David Jesson in October 2010 in an article about comprehensive schools said:
The fact that most pupils are unaffected by this ideological divide, and that many areas have well established and effective systems of comprehensive education has not lessened the acrimony. This has also had important political ramifications with the issue providing clear blue water between the major parties.

Am I right in thinking that UKIP supports ‘selection’ basically to reassure Conservative voters that the good ship UKIP is in reassuringly blue water just like themselves or are you able to produce a rational justification for the 11+ in a manner that eludes Mr Appleyard and his ideological comrades?
Wow! Is all this true?
[quote][p][bold]Lawrence Anthony Linehan[/bold] wrote: As we are on the subject of the reasoning processes of right wing Buckinghamshire politicians I would be interested to hear or read David Meacock, UKIP’s parliamentary candidate for Wycombe, explain why [italic]his[/italic]party supports the 11+. Please don’t bring out any chestnuts about ‘freedom of choice’ - we all know the exam is compulsory and failure means a second-class education. Or any stuff about local working-class lads and lasses passing the 11+ and becoming the first person in their family to go to university and become a brain surgeon or whatever - there is a wealth of evidence to show that grammar schools are citadels for the advantaged and aspirational, and not even the local advantaged and aspirational any longer. Nor any rubbish about ‘selection’ being necessary to attain ‘excellence’ - Lord Plant the Head of KCL Law School failed the 11+ and Andrew Dilnot, former principal of St Hugh's College, Oxford, and pro vice-chancellor of the university, went to a comprehensive school, to say nothing of William Hague. If you were to say, like Mike Appleyard, that people voted for it you would be on truthful ground, but how many people have an informed understanding of how the system works and its alternatives? How many people realise there is a varying standard required to pass the exam each year for example? Professor David Jesson in October 2010 in an article about comprehensive schools said: [italic] The fact that most pupils are unaffected by this ideological divide, and that many areas have well established and effective systems of comprehensive education has not lessened the acrimony. This has also had important political ramifications with the issue providing clear blue water between the major parties. [/italic] Am I right in thinking that UKIP supports ‘selection’ basically to reassure Conservative voters that the good ship UKIP is in reassuringly blue water just like themselves or are [italic] you [/italic] able to produce a rational justification for the 11+ in a manner that eludes Mr Appleyard and his ideological comrades?[/p][/quote]Wow! Is all this true? mistamina
  • Score: 0

2:24pm Thu 24 Jul 14

JOHNHEALY says...

Having just read the headine it sounds as if headteachers are criticising the council for wanting to use "farsical and dangerous" buses. Can't you just see buses dressed up like clowns with red noses, driving recklessly and attacking students into the bargain!!!!!!!!! (joke)
Having just read the headine it sounds as if headteachers are criticising the council for wanting to use "farsical and dangerous" buses. Can't you just see buses dressed up like clowns with red noses, driving recklessly and attacking students into the bargain!!!!!!!!! (joke) JOHNHEALY
  • Score: 0
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