The father of a teenager with special needs says a recent change of schools helped his son, but a subsequent cut in funding for transportation means he can't get there.

"By the time he was 14-1/2, 15, we realized that it was social anxiety was a big part of it," said Julian Maytum, father of 18-year-old Brandon Maytum.

"And then he just pretty much withdrew into his bedroom and lived there for three years."

But Maytum says Brandon did start going to a school in St. John's to get his diploma, with taxis to and from the school paid by the government.

Maytum says a short time later the school district recommended a transfer to the Brother T. I. Murphy Learning Resource Centre, a decision he approved of.

But after a couple of weeks there, the taxis were no longer covered because the Murphy Centre isn't a district school.

And Maytum says he can't drive his son to school.

Son 'back in his room again spinning'

He says Brandon has since taken a turn for the worse.

"He's back in his room again spinning," Maytum said. "He wonders what's wrong with him, you know, what's going on. There's a lot of despair there."

The government says Maytum's son could return to the district school and have his taxi fares covered.

But Maytum says that would be too big of a setback.

NDP education critic Dale Kirby says the province should keep paying the taxi fares.

He insists the government still has an obligation, regardless of the school.

"In the end, we all pay — he pays, his family pays and society pays, because we are not doing our job in providing him the needs that he is legally entitled to have addressed," Kirby said.