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People's Daily Online>>China Society

National school bus standards seem impractical

(People's Daily)

18:19, November 22, 2011

Edited and translated by People's Daily Online

The recent kindergarten bus crash at Yulinzi Town of Zhengning County, Gansu province has again sounded the alarm and drawn public attention to the issue of school bus safety. Reporters have found through surveys that it is difficult for the government to regulate the use of school buses because schools mostly rent buses, given the high cost of bus purchase and maintenance.

"A school bus will cost hundreds of thousands of yuan. Who will cover the costs?" a logistics officer of a kindergarten in Nanchang said, "Even if a school can afford it; how can it collect funds for vehicle maintenance?"

He added that for instance, the maintenance of a Jinbei passenger mini-bus costs about 20,000 yuan annually and the annual wage of a driver totals 20,000 to 30,000 yuan, so the total annual expense will reach 50,000 to 60,000 yuan after vehicle insurance premiums and repair fees are included. The costs are very high to many schools.

The schools in Guangzhou all own or rent buses to transport students. An officer from a private school said that without financial support from the government, private-run schools can only use tuition and funds from investors to cover each type of expenditure and have to stay frugal. They have long sustained losses in terms of using school buses to transport students.

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