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To ask the Minister for Education and Science his views on allowing parents pay the charges for school transport in more than two instalments in order to alleviate hardship caused by the increases; and if he will make a statement on the matter. – David Stanton.

* For WRITTEN answer on Thursday, 2nd April, 2009. Reference Number: 13870/09


Minister of State, Seán Haughey

I wish to advise the Deputy that charges will continue to be waived in the case of eligible post-primary children where the family is in possession of a valid medical card. In addition, and in order to minimise the impact of the new charges, a maximum family payment of €650 will apply and, parents will be offered the option to spread the amount due over two payments payable in July and December.

It is not envisaged that there will be a reduction in the annual charge or a change in the payment arrangements.