1 April 2023
By Elaine Murphy
Fianna Fáil TD for Cork East James O’Connor, in recent weeks, urged families to apply for School Transport Scheme early this year to ensure they don’t miss out on a place for their children.
Deputy O’Connor said first time users can now apply for the State backed School Transport Scheme for the 2023/2024 academic year. The closing date for these applications will be April 28.
All other applications can be made from April 3rd until June 9.
Fees have been reintroduced for the coming school term but at reduced rates than before.
A primary school child will be charged at 50 euro for the academic school year, while a post-primary child will be charged 75 euro.
There will be a cap of 125 euro per family for the 2023/2034 school year.
“I would encourage all families who are applying this year to do so as early as possible to avoid any disappointment,” Deputy O’Connor said.
“First-time users of the scheme can now apply for their place on a school bus for next academic year. From early next month all others will also be able to apply.
“It is also important that families realise the closing date for payment/registering medical cards has been brought forward this year so that Bus Eireann can process applications, arrange transport and issue tickets to families as soon as possible for the next school term. They need to keep that in mind.”
“The Bus Éireann family portal will be open to accept payments/medical card details from the 3 April 2023 until 9 June 2023 . Payments made after the deadline date will be deemed late and families are not guaranteed a seat at that stage.”
New applications are considered as:
• Pupils who will be attending junior infants in primary school or first year in post-primary school for the first time in 2023.
• Pupils that may move home address or will be attending a new school in the 2023/24 school year
• Applications can be made by visiting www.buseireann.ie/
• The closing date for new applications is Friday 28 April 2023 . Any new applications made after the closing date are considered late applications and families are not guaranteed a seat.
The annual charge for School Transport Services for the 2023/24 school year is set out below:
Primary Eligible/ Concessionary Pupil: €50
Post – Primary Eligible Pupil/Concessionary Pupil: €75
Maximum Family Contribution at Post-Primary: €125
The eligibility criteria for School Transport for the 2023/24 school year is as follows
• Children are eligible for transport at primary level where they reside not less than 3.2 kilometres from and are attending their nearest national school, and at post-primary level where they reside not less than 4.8 kilometres from and are attending their nearest post-primary school/education centre as determined by the department/Bus Éireann, having regard to ethos and language.
• Children who are eligible for school transport and who have completed the application and payment process on time will be accommodated on school transport services where such services are in operation.
• Children who are not eligible for school transport, but who complete the application and payment process on time, will be considered for spare seats that may exist after eligible children have been facilitated; such seats are referred to as concessionary seats.
• Because of the nature of concessionary transport for non-eligible children and the priority of providing places for eligible children, there may be an excess of demand over supply for concessionary places, in these cases Bus Éireann will allocate tickets for spare seats using an agreed selection process.
• In addition, temporary alleviation measures will continue for the 2023/24 school year, pending completion of the school transport scheme review. This means that transport will be provided where such services are in operation for post-primary pupils who are eligible for transport to their nearest school and are attending their second nearest school and who apply and pay on time.
Pupils from Ukraine
Pupils from Ukraine who require school transport should not apply on the Bus Éireann family portal but should visit gov.ie/ukraine for details on how to apply. Please note that any pupils from Ukraine who are currently on school transport do not need to re-apply for the 2023/24 school year unless they have changed address or school.