Welcome u-turn by Isle of Wight council on school bus seats controversy

The move to charge parents for both morning and afternoon seats on school buses, even if they only wanted one or the other, caused outrage across the Island.

U Turn

Earlier this month the Isle of Wight council announced they would be not only hiking the cost of seats on school buses (for those that have to pay), but would also take away the option to book only morning or afternoon buses, forcing parents to pay for both, even if they weren’t planning to use them.

Nearly three times to cost for some
The move caused huge outrage among parents across the Isle of Wight, with, for example one parent saying the cost of sending her two children to Medina College from Ventnor by bus would be rising from £285 to £780 a year – nearly three times the cost.

An apparent u-turn has now been confirmed, with AM and PM passes re-introduced. According to a spokesperson for the council, the cabinet member for children and education, Paul Brading, requested the change.

Brading: “Hope parents can now make the choice they want”
Last week Cllr Paul Brading, Cabinet member for children’s services and education had said,

“I do accept it’s expensive, but I do feel the price increase is justified.”

Following contact from parents, he now adds,

“I am pleased to announce that after speaking to parents, and considering emails I’ve received, I have instructed officers to re-instate the privilege bus option for AM/PM passes for the coming year.

“Thank you to everyone for taking the trouble to raise this important issue with me, and I hope parents can now make the choice they want.”

Image: japharl under CC BY 2.0

Tuesday, 17th July, 2018 10:48am


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Filed under: Education, Island-wide, Isle of Wight Council, Isle of Wight News, Top story

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4 Comments on "Welcome u-turn by Isle of Wight council on school bus seats controversy"

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Here again is one of the times when you are actually glad that there are politicians to tell the officers/staff “no, we aren’t going to do that – change it back”. I wish that the Council hadn’t privatised Island Roads for the same reason; we have no control really over what they do now….and no one to pressure to make them do things.


Correct me if I am wrong, but I understood that it was the councillors decision to up the price and to remove the option for one-way travel. The “office staff” were just following orders. No?


Often it’s the other way around; the officers are telling the politicians what to do. Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain….


Did the officers make such a far-reaching and guaranteed unpopular decision off their own bat? Probably not, which begs the question: who made the decision and why wasn’t Cllr Brading (whose responsibility includes the victims of the decision) involved beforehand?