Like many other parents of children at schools which are part of the Multi-Academy Trust, the Discover Learning Trust (DLT), I was informed that from September they were to withdraw funding for buses to and from Oxclose Community Academy, George Washington Primary School and Springwell Village Primary School. This would have effected many families across our ward of Washington West especially in Donwell.
As a result of this I asked parents to contact me, their Member of Parliament and the DLT to express their deep concerns about the impact this would have. A number of residents did just that and shared their stories with me, for which I am grateful.
After making contact with the DLT, I was invited to a meeting with the Chief Executive Officer and Chair of Trustees who outlined the financial reasoning for the withdrawal of this vital service. Further to these discussions I also contacted the Leader of Sunderland City Council, Cllr Graeme Miller and Deputy Leader, Cllr Claire Rowntree to seek their assistance in finding a solution to the problem. Cllr Linda Williams and Cllr Louise Farthing have also been a huge help, providing experience and knowledge to a new Councillor like me who was determined to support the residents of my ward.
I am delighted that with their support, following discussions with Nexus we have secured a bus service that will replace the current service from September.
I want to put on my record my thanks to Councillors Miller, Rowntree, Williams and Farthing who helped me, help you.