The Transport Ministry will introduce a school bus service for primary schools on a pilot basis which will pick up children from their homes, bringing them back to their doorstep after they finish.
Talking before the House Education Committee, Transport Minister Yiannis Karousos said the new pilot scheme would be implemented for six months starting September
The routes will cover a selection of schools in urban, tourist and remote areas at the first stage.
Karousos said the school bus would pick up children from their homes and drop them back at their doorstep once school was done for the day.
Children will be picked up by a trained escort who will deliver the children to their parents once they get home.
The minister said that the government wants to broaden the programme to cover all primary schools in Cyprus from September 2023.
“Probably, there will not be an additional charge during the pilot phase, but any future cost will be minimal”.
Karousos said the programme is part of the ministry’s overall efforts to alleviate the problem of traffic jams in urban areas in the morning and at noon when kids finish school.
The Transport Ministry has also proposed changes to school timetables to alleviate the time people are stuck in traffic while taking their kids to school or going to work.
The ministry has asked for a study to be conducted first concerning the current school hours and civil servants’ timetables.
The aim is to determine whether traffic could be alleviated by tweaking school hours and public service working hours.
According to Karousos, urban traffic will be eased if the hours are shifted, and he highlighted that the working hours of the public sector must also change.
He argued that smart traffic light systems installed in Nicosia and Limassol had reduced traffic gridlock.