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Schools: Transport

Volume 469: debated on Monday 10 December 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what estimate she has made of the average cost per capita of school transport in predominantly (a) rural and (b) urban local authorities; and if she will make a statement. (170878)

I have been asked to reply.

The predicted average cost of school transport for the financial year 2007-08 per pupil in predominantly rural and urban local authorities is shown in the following table. The estimated costs are averaged across all pupils attending maintained schools: most do not use school transport. The costs in urban areas mainly relate to transport arrangements made for children with special educational needs.

The Education (Budget Statements) (England) Regulations 2007, budgeted net expenditure per pupil1, 2 by local authorities3 in England on school transport1: 2007-084, cash terms figures4, 5 as reported by local authorities as at 30th November 2007Budgeted net expenditure on school transport1 per pupil2 (£)England120Predominantly urban local authorities3110Predominantly rural local authorities3200 1 Includes all elements of school transport for school pupils. This is drawn from local authorities' 2007-08 Section 52 Budget Statements (Table 1 lines 1.2.5 - SEN transport, 2.4.6 - Home to school transport [SEN transport] and 2.4.7 - Home to school transport [other home to school transport]).2 The January 2007 pupil numbers used to calculate the per pupil amounts are as reported by the local authority on their Section 52 Budget Statement (Table 2 column 13a) comprising of the full-time equivalent number pupils registered at the school used for the initial determination of the school's budget share under the local authority's allocation formula.3 The classification of local authorities into those which are predominately urban and predominately rural is based upon The Rural and Urban Area Classification (2004) sponsored by the Countryside Agency (CA), the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), Office for National Statistics (ONS), the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister (ODPM) and the Welsh Assembly Government. Predominantly rural local authorities are classified as those which consist of more than 50 per cent. rural Output Areas.4 2007-08 data remains provisional and subject to change by the local authority.5 Figures are rounded to the nearest £10.