Committee learns of successful safe routes and transport for Lochside Academy pupils

Members of Aberdeen City Council’s Education Operational Delivery Committee were today (Thursday 17 September) updated on the successful performance of the free transport services and safe walking provisions for pupils at Lochside Academy.

An annual review of the transport and access provisions for the city’s newest Academy was discussed at the Committee and members were updated on the academic year 2019/20, from August 2019 to July 2020.

The Council currently subsidises five buses operated by First Aberdeen and First Aberdeen commercially provides five bus services part-subsidised through fare revenue from bus passes. Pupils in Kincorth, Leggart and Torry receive free transport between 7am and 6pm provided as an annual bus pass loaded onto the pupils Accord Card.

The Committee was informed that the transport provision transport operated well and with sufficient capacity in the last academic year thanks to close partnership working between the school, the Council’s Passenger Transport Unit and First Aberdeen with a significant reduction of operational as the services have become more established.

Additional safety measures as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic were also highlighted with the introduction of school-only services and enhanced cleaning regimes

Safe walking routes were also noted to be successful with no recorded incidents involving a school pupil from Lochside Academy over the period. As a result, no amendments have been identified or made to the routes to school over the past year.

The Committee also instructed the Chief Operating Officer to write to the Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills asking when the Scottish Government will free travel for those under the age of 19 will be implemented in order that the savings on school transport can assist in bringing about a balanced Council for 2021/22.