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Further Education: Public Transport and Covid-19

Volume 682: debated on Monday 12 October 2020

What discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Transport on the availability of public transport for young people in further education during the covid-19 outbreak. (907346)

We have been working closely with the Secretary of State for Transport to ensure that young people can travel and continue to travel to their place of education during the coronavirus pandemic. We have made £44 million available to fund additional dedicated transport to schools and colleges, and we will announce additional funding shortly.

Does the Minister accept that the Government have a responsibility to ensure that local authorities have the funds available to operate low-cost travel schemes, such as the System One scheme in Greater Manchester? Does she agree that it is unacceptable for the Treasury to simply devolve cuts, which will ultimately have an impact on young people?

Of course we have taken very seriously the issue of ensuring that children can get to school and colleges; there has been not only an extra £2 billion in funding to help people to walk to school and to make it safe for them to get to school, but £44 million for dedicated transport. So the Treasury is putting a lot of investment into this area.