Minister of State John Halligan says he has taken a number of short-term measures to protect the school transport scheme for rural areas.
However, the Minister has failed to give any clear committment on the challenges rural communities are facing to retain services in the long-term.
The Minister says he is restricted by the changes in the criteria set out in the 2011 government Budget as a result of a Value for Money report.
One of the recommendations is the changes to catchement areas which is affecting areas like Bunninaden in south Sligo.
Another is the minimum number of eligible pupils which is affecting areas like Castlebaldwin.
However, Minister Halligan has made a concesssion on the minimum number of eligible pupils for the coming year (2017/2018 school year):