In response to an article published in the Wyong Regional Chronicle edition 159; The blanket requirement that a primary-school student walk over 2.3km to school before being eligible for a bus pass, is typical of the bureaucratic obtuseness of Transport for NSW.
Walking on potholed roads in streets with no footpaths, having to negotiate traffic without intersection lights or pedestrian crossings, and often having to wade through puddles left by inadequate drainage is not the same experience as walking to school in an inner-city suburb where all safety facilities are available.
Obviously, there has to be some standards, but the standards should be related to reality and not to the whim of some remote public servant.
When I was 6-years-old, I walked about 600m to school across two lightly trafficked roads and I find the idea of walking four times that distance utterly ridiculous.
We have days of intense heat and days of intense rain, yet this is all one to the decision-makers in central Sydney.
What is a teacher to do when a child arrives drenched to the skin from a downpour of rain?
One wonders how many of the Transport for NSW seat-warmers walk (or could walk) 2.3km to get to work, yet this is considered perfectly satisfactory for a 6-year-old child.
Perhaps, a 2.3km walk everyday should be mandatory for employment at Transport for NSW.
It seems quite likely that such a requirement would quickly bring a reduction in the present school-access distance.
Email, Mar 13
Bruce Hyland, Woy Woy