As part of its drive to improve on school attendance in Lethem, the Lethem Town Council plans to introduce a school bus service. Mayor of Lethem, Carlton Beckles, said that the Municipality will be purchasing two new 32-seater buses to start the new school year.
“The president has charged us to get the children in the school,” the Mayor said, adding that, “all over the country persons are donating these [school] buses. Unfortunately we are not fortunate up here [Lethem] to have those business persons…so from the municipality we will be purchasing buses to get the children to school, at an extremely reduced fare,” Beckles was quoted by the Government Information Agency as saying.
The Mayor explained that the Municipality plans to offer the bus service at half the cost of what is currently being charged by other transport service operators.
“Parents have to pay as much as $2000 or $2500 a week per child and that is from Lethem to St Ignatius. If you have three children going to school and you are paying between $2000 to $2500, you are paying between $6000 to $7500 a week,” Beckles pointed out.
“We will take those three children to school and bring them back for $3000 a week…we would not exceed more than a $1000 per week to get your child to and from school with the service,” the Mayor said.
In addition to bringing much needed financial relief to the parents in the communities, the bus service will be an economic project for the municipality, whereby whatever funds are derived from the venture will be plugged back into education development in the town, Beckles said.
The provision of the bus service is in keeping with the Municipality’s thrust to improve education delivery in the town. This vision encompasses having a secondary school, a technical institute and a university.