A MOTHER who is facing a £2,400 school bus bill for her children this year has called out the “ludicrous” cost of school transport.

Louise Tickle, who lives in South Woodchester has two kids at Sir William Romney’s School in Tetbury.

This coming academic year she is being charged just under £1,200 per child for school transport.

She says it’s a ludicrous amount of money which is completely unaffordable for many parents.

The cost per child was initially going to be £1,392.86 but the school is providing a £200 subsidy per student.

She said: “It’s a massive hit to the teaching budget, just to get kids to school.

“I’m horrified that this is what ‘state’ education has come to – that there is so little oversight and involvement by a local authority that parents can be told two weeks before term ends that there is going to be such a massive hike to transport costs.

“This year it was just short of £1,000 per child – already hugely expensive.

"What are we meant to do if we can’t afford it – every parent get on the road to drive our kids into school each morning and afternoon?

“There are about 70 kids on that bus.

"In environmental and traffic terms at a busy time of day that makes no sense, and it would also take 45 minutes round trip for me to do the trip."

A spokesperson for Gloucestershire County Council said they understand the challenges families are facing and explained they spend almost £20million a year on school transport for children who qualify.

This price has gone up by a further £2million this year alone, they said.

“We fully understand the financial challenges that families are under and how difficult it can be when prices increase.

“The vast majority of school bus transport is provided by private companies and we have no influence over the prices.

“Nationally, the increases in fuel and wage bills have seen prices increase across the country.

“We do offer assistance to some children based on Government guidance to ensure that all cases are dealt with fairly and support offered to the most vulnerable.

“These policies have not changed for many years although we appreciate this doesn’t make it any easier for some families.”