Councillor pledges to help parents facing lengthy walk to school

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PROTESTS: Parents angered at not having a bus service because they live within a 3km radius of school

“WE are fighting this and we will get the solution.” The determination and pledge of councillor Sofia Alvarez responding to parent’s anger at changes to the school bus service on the Orihuela Costa.

As parents protested outside the school in Playa Flamenca this week highlighting their anger at losing the service for some who now face lengthy walks with their young children up to four times a day, councillor Sofia Alvarez said she understood their frustrations: “It is unacceptable and these changes have not come from the town hall, they have come from the Ministry of Education and we were no more aware of them than the parents.”

These new regulations state that bus services can only be provided for pupils living more than 3km away from their school. However, this is a direct 3km and on the Orihuela Costa Sofia said it is not possible to calculate distances like this. As a result they have provided the authorities with the necessary paperwork and documents and police authorisation to prove there is no direct line of walking to school and the routes are difficult with ravines and some unlit areas.

The paperwork was valid by one technician but then overruled by another: “This is clearly an issue, especially as the senior school pupils still have their transport and we are now going to a higher authority in Valencia and are waiting on a reply. Unfortunately it is not a case of the town hall just putting on buses, but we are trying to help those affected.”

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