The Emirates increases school bus fees amid shocking parents
Following the recent 50% increase in school bus prices in the United Arab Emirates, a number of parents made shocking decisions to express their dissatisfaction with the recent decision and the significant increase in prices, which rendered some of them unable to bear their costs.
Car sharing is used by parents for their children.
After several private schools hiked bus prices, many parents resorted to alternative solutions, such as using a car-sharing service for their children, to offset the significant rise in bus fees, which varied from 20% to 52%.
One of the parents mentioned that the Pink School, where their children are registered, had doubled the school transportation fare from 3,500 to 4,500 dirhams.
Schools in the UAE emailed fee schedules to parents, which The National obtained, showing that travels within the emirate increased to 5,500 dirhams, up from 3,600 dirhams the previous year.
School bus pricing in the United Arab Emirates fluctuated according to geography, with fees increasing from 5,100 dirhams to 6,500 dirhams for travels from Sharjah to Dubai and from 4,200 dirhams to 5,700 dirhams for excursions from Sharjah to Ajman.
The National reached out to Al-Wardia Private School and the International School of Choueifat for comment, but neither responded quickly.
In the UAE, there is a car-sharing service.
It's important to note that while car sharing is permitted in the UAE, it's unlawful if drivers demand a fee for the ride.
To assist reduce the number of cars on the road, the Abu Dhabi Department of Transport started a car sharing system in 2019.
The idea was to allow residents to sign up to provide rides to others and to check for potential rides from others.
According to Ms Mohammed, some parents have turned to WhatsApp groups to find people ready to share a car.
"Every mother looks for a parent who lives in the same area and asks them to drop the kids off and another parent to pick them up," she explained.
The operational costs of school buses in the UAE are significant.
For his part, the head of Sharjah's Victoria English School said that operating school buses is not lucrative, adding that practically all private schools in Sharjah do not earn from buses due to high operational costs.
He stated that these include licensing from various officials in each emirate, as well as the cost of the bus, which is 400,000 dirhams.
"More costs come from insurance fees, fuel prices, and driver and supervisor salaries, not to mention the costs of regular bus maintenance," he continued.
Emirates Transport, which serves 246,924 kids in 615 schools in the United Arab Emirates, told The National newspaper that school bus rental prices are influenced by a variety of factors.
Tuition expenses for UAE residents are limited at 6,000 dirhams.
It is worth noting that, at the start of the new academic year, the Emirates Foundation imposed a number of controls and mechanisms for paying tuition fees in government schools for students residing in the country for the next academic year 2023-2024, so that fees do not exceed 6,000 dirhams, to be paid in one payment or in installments at the start of each semester. Study.
The institution noted that the student's guardian agrees to pay the fees on the given date, and that the school reserves the right to issue three written warnings to the guardian in the event of noncompliance. It should be noted that if non-payment continues, the student's end-of-year results will be delayed, and transfer certificates to other schools will not be provided until the fees are cleared.
The Emirates Foundation for School Education also confirmed it.
The Abu Dhabi Police force mandates a five-meter stopping distance from the school bus. Until all students can pass without risk, the hazard lights must also be on.
Two more ideas are as follows:
- On two-way streets, drivers must pull over at least five meters apart.
- If you're driving in the same direction as the bus and you see a bus coming, stop at least five meters away from it.