Aug. 13, 2020

HARRISBURG – House Majority Leader Kerry Benninghoff (R-Centre/Mifflin) today sent a letter to the Pennsylvania Department of Education asking them to issue guidance that will ensure school transportation for students returning to in-person education.
The letter is in response to growing concerns about students of nonpublic and nontraditional public schools being denied transportation services.

“To clear up any confusion about the responsibility of local school districts to provide this service, I am asking that your department issue clarifying guidance on the matter to ensure that both public and nonpublic school students have access to their regular school transportation and the best possible educational opportunities. As I am sure your office and Pennsylvania’s 500 school districts remember: Despite these uncertain times, the legislature intentionally fully funded education for the entire year so that school districts would have the tools they need to return students to in-person education,” Benninghoff’s letter says in part.

“Without transportation, even those schools that have worked to develop a model for safely returning their students to in-person instruction will be unnecessarily hindered in doing so. With a few short weeks remaining before the start of school, we need to remove this unnecessary hurdle,” the letter continues. “Keep in mind, both parents of public and nonpublic school students pay taxes to Pennsylvania and its school districts. Government must be accountable to them by providing transportation to school. This includes providing transportation to nonpublic school students returning to in-person learning even if the accountable public school has elected to begin their school year virtually.”

Representative Kerry Benninghoff
Pennsylvania House Majority Leader
171st Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives