Indian High Suggests Alternate Means of Transport for Students

Preeti Kannan
Filed on March 17, 2009

DUBAI - A private school in Dubai has urged its students to walk, cycle or rely on public buses to ease the pressure on the school’s transport facility.

Indian High School (IHS), Dubai, has also appealed to parents, living close to each other, to consider carpooling.

The school has announced an increase in its transport fee from April from Dh135 to Dh180, for students residing in Dubai, and from Dh275 to Dh300, for those living in Sharjah.

Statistics disclosed by the school reveal that nearly 95 per cent of the school’s 9,000 students rely on the school’s fleet of about 80 buses.

“With our existing fleet and staff strength, we are unable to meet the transport requirements of all our students,” said the school in a circular to its students last week, attributing it to alarming traffic, Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) norms to revamp buses, rising drivers salaries and maintenance costs.

The school, in the circular, appealed to parents to consider carpooling to drop children, train older students to use the public transport buses and encourage children living in the vicinity of the school to walk or cycle to the school.

“We are only requesting parents to consider these measures. We are not saying we cannot provide transport. We will provide services as much as we can. However, it is an optional service,” Ashok Kumar, principal and CEO of the school, told Khaleej Times.

The circular comes in anticipation of a possible increase in demand for the school transport service in the next academic year. “We do not want to expand ourservices. We have increased ourtransport costs only marginally as we are a non-profit school.

“However, we cannot afford to run the buses at a loss,” added the official from the school, considered one of the most affordable Indian syllabus schools in the UAE.

Parents, on the other hand, welcomed the circular with some even indicating they would work on the school’s suggestions.

“Car pooling may be out of the question as I work far and my wife does not drive. However, if the RTA bus services are available and convenient for my daughter to travel, I would be open to her taking the bus,” said Shiv Kumar, a parent of a student in IHS.

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