Rural Schools & School Travel
Rural and Remote locations in Australia provide the greatest challenges for improving provision of education options and pathways for children and families. Many children attend small schools with limited subject availability. More isolated schools consist of one teacher classrooms that comprise multi-levels from Prep to year 6.
Air and road travel are essential modes of travel for rural and remote living and education as long distances are not avoidable and most times difficult with current challenges for families.
The Federal ICPA team looking after this portfolio is Di Skene (portfolio leader), Judy Sinclair-Newton and Lisa Slade.
Small Schools and Travel Reports to Federal Conference.
Currently the following airfare schemes are available: -
· Qantas has two state trials in place at present for the public, one in Queensland and the other in Western Australia that offer a 30% variable discount;
· Rex Airlines have ‘bush to boarding’ scheme available in North Queensland between any Gulf port and Cairns and Brisbane to Mt Isa via Toowoomba, Charleville, Quilpie, Windorah, Birdsville, Bedourie and Boulia in western Queensland;
· Local residential fares in regions such as Charleville and Longreach in Qld where local government has worked with state government and airlines to offer residents reduced fares;
· Patient Assisted Travel Schemes (PATS) in WA, SA, NT and Qld and similarly named schemes in NSW and Tasmania provide financial assistance with travel and accommodation where rural and remote patients need to seek medical specialists.
Kim Hughes (Past ICPA Qld President; Wendy Hick (Current ICPA (Aust) President) and ICPA member Danielle Doyle were fortunate to be invited to speak at one of the panels on the Senate Standing Committees on Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport into the operation, regulation and funding of air route service delivery to rural, regional and remote communities. Click here to view the ICPA (Aust) submission lodged February 2018.
Current lobby for Rural Schools and Travel Portfolio can be viewed here.