Principals are still unhappy at buses


A GROUP of school principals remains unhappy with the services provided by Kirklands Buslines, despite the Minister for Transport's demands the problems be fixed by Friday.

Lismore Primary Principals Council president, Erwin Bates, said most primary schools were still experiencing problems with buses arriving before supervision was provided at schools, and after school.

The South Lismore Primary School principal said some schools were still reporting long journey times for students.

He said members of the council met Kirklands' management, and representatives from the Department of Transport, on Monday.

"There has been a decrease in the number of complaints to schools since the DirectorGeneral of Transport, John Lee, meet stakeholders last Friday," Mr Bates said.

"I think people are giving Kirklands a few days to put the necessary changes in place.

"The lack of consultation, I think, was what caused the problems in the first place, but now Kirklands are contacting local schools to hear their concerns.

"In the long run not everyone is going to be winner. Any changes Kirklands make will suit some, but not others."

Meanwhile, Richmond River High students had to catch a private bus to and from their school athletics carnival yesterday because Kirklands refused to alter routes to take the students directly to Riverview Park, in South Lismore, where the event was held.

Principal Neville Ryan said he spoke to Kirklands' management on Tuesday about altering the route to drop and pick-up students directly from the sports venue, but said he had to arrange alternative transport because he did not hear back from them.

He said Kirklands did send a bus to the Lake Street school to take students to the sports fields, but the bus left before students on other Kirklands' connections had arrived at school.

"My concern is that if school activities are being carried out at another venue, why won't Kirklands provide transport for my students when they are getting paid for it?"

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