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School Mergers Written Answer, 13/11/14 [S]

Written Answer given in response to Fiona McLeod's (SNP) question asking the Scottish Government what statutory duties local authorities have regarding how school mergers can impact on pupils' health and safety when travelling to school.

The Minister for Learning, Science and Scotland's Languages, Alasdair Allan, replied that the statutory responsibility for the provision of education in Scotland rests with local authorities, including changes to their school estate such as school closures or mergers and consideration of any impact of the change on pupilsí journeys to school.

Local authorities have a duty to make arrangements as they consider necessary for the transport between home and school of pupils residing and attending schools in their area. All authorities provide free school transport for pupils living more than the statutory walking distance from the school that is identified as the nearest suitable school, which is defined as two miles for children under the age of eight and three miles for those aged eight and over. In considering these arrangements, authorities are required to have regard to the safety of the pupil.

For the full answer to this and other questions see the Scottish Parliament Written Answer Report 13 November 2014 which is available from the Scottish Parliament website.

Further Information

Scottish Parliament Written Answer Report 13 November 2014