Following a consultation on changes to the home to school transport policy the executive members agreed to the following changes.
If the nearest catchment or nearest school is full, transport will be provided, in accordance with the authority's transport policy, to the nearest school with places available.
The following categories of children from low income families (children entitled to free school meals or whose parent are in receipt of the maximum level of Working Tax Credit) are eligible for free home to school transport:
Eligibility will be assessed on an annual basis and may be withdrawn if parents' benefits change. For information about sources of financial support for young people aged over 16, visit www.gov.uk.
If your child attends a school which is not your catchment or nearest school you will normally be responsible for any associated transport costs for the duration of your child's time at that school.
In exceptional circumstances, free transport may be provided on a temporary basis however each case will be assessed on its own merits.
Free home to school transport enquiry form
Please read the frequently asked questions below if you think you are entitled to free transport. If you have a question you can make an enquiry below.
If your child is starting school or transferring to secondary school in September and you have applied for a school place then we will automatically assess your child's eligibility.
The mode of transport provided for eligible children will be either by:
In exceptional circumstances, allowances may be paid for parents to use their own transport. Children with specific mobility difficulties may be provided with specialist transport however, each case will be assessed on its own merit.
Existing arrangements for transporting pupils to denominational schools will change in:
Where services are provided to denominational schools for pupils who are entitled to free home to school transport, there may be some availability for pupils who are not entitled under the policy to purchase a pass. However, this availability will be limited and will be sold on a first come first served basis under the paid travel permit terms and conditions.
The exception to this is children from low income families (children entitled to free school meals or whose parents are in receipt of the maximum level of working tax credit) who will still be eligible for free home to denominational school transport as follows:
This will be assessed on an annual basis and may be withdrawn if parents' benefits change.
If your child attends a residential special school, free transport or a transport allowance will be provided at mid and full term holidays. For post-16 pupils placed by the local authority at a residential school or college outside of the further and higher education sectors the help offered will be up to 12 return journeys a year for students and their parents or carers usually at a pre-determined mileage rate.
In some cases assistance may be provided for ineligible children if there are spare seats available on existing school buses however, parents will be expected to pay a contribution towards costs.
When deciding on eligibility for assistance with transport, the measurement from home to school will be taken from the boundary of the home to the nearest entrance gate (not always the main entrance) to the school following the nearest available walked route which can mean a suitable footpath or bridle-path. Where a private road or farm track exists this is included in the measurement. This means that in some cases pupils living in the same street or even in adjoining properties may not all be eligible for free home to school transport.
When deciding on eligibility for children in receipt of free school meals or if parents receive their maximum level of working tax credit, routes of two miles or less will be measured as a walked route, using footpaths or bridle ways. Routes over two miles will be measured along road routes. This only applies to children if they are in receipt of free school meals or if parents receive their maximum level of working tax credit.
The term 'home' in this policy means the permanent address where the child lives for most of the time. Where children have more than one 'home' (i.e. parents or guardians live separately) eligibility will only be assessed from separate addresses when children live with each parent or guardian for 50 per cent of the school term time, this does not include weekends or holidays.
Routes from home to school are regularly reviewed by the local authority to incorporate newly identified routes into the electronic mapping system used for measuring. If a route from home to school is re-measured and found to be under the qualifying distance, free home to school transport will be withdrawn with a full terms notice.
All the vehicles used subject to regular inspections and the drivers and assistants all have the relevant clearance to work with children. The authority takes all reasonable precautions to ensure the safety of pupils using the vehicles. For their part, pupils are expected to behave whilst travelling and wear a seatbelt, where fitted. Parents' are reminded they are solely responsible for the safety of their children both before they board and after disembarking the vehicle and for ensuring their children get to and from the nearest pickup point on time.
Children and young people with special educational needs may get help with transport to school or college. Visit the special educational needs page for more information.
Visit the timetable information page to search for up-to-date timetable information. Timetable information is available for bus services only, you will need to contact the relevant operator for more details about taxi services.