School transport fees will be suspended for a year and the Back to School Allowance will be increased by €100 per child under a €67m living expenses package agreed by the Government tonight.
The new budget measures, aimed at helping families in need, include an increase of €100 per child in the back-to-school grant for clothes and shoes, paid to parents in August before the start of the new school year.
School transport fees will also be waived, announced Minister of Education Norma Foley.
The maximum amount a family can pay for school transport for secondary school students is €500 per year and €150 for families with children in primary school.
For the coming school year, however, the families do not have to pay anything at all.
The overall package includes measures worth €67 million, of which €47 million are social protection measures.
“Given the nature of the measures, we felt it was best to intervene at this point rather than waiting for a budget at the end of September when it would be too late in relation to some of the direct costs,” Secretary McGrath said.
“We are very conscious of the extra burdens placed on families as they prepare to return to school,” Minister Foley said.
She said the student transit fee waiver was a “significant one.”
Secretary McGrath said it was crucial the payments were made now as waiting for the budget at the end of September was too late.
These budget measures are being frontloaded to help families in difficulty, Secretary McGrath said.
He said these were “one-off measures” for the 2022/2023 school year to help families cope with rising inflation.
Senior ministers are to announce today that an additional 60,000 children will benefit from an expanded school feeding scheme.
Social Protection Secretary Heather Humphreys, Education Secretary Norma Foley and Public Expenditure Secretary Michael McGrath announce the measures at government buildings.
https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/politics/school-bus-fees-waived-for-one-year-and-100-per-child-increase-in-back-to-school-allowance-announced-41816161.html School bus fees waived for one year and back-to-school allowance increased by €100 per child