SEN travel assistance and allowances

If a child or young person is eligible, we will consider how travel assistance could be provided in the most appropriate, and least restrictive way possible.

All applications will be considered by a weekly SEN Travel Assistance Panel to find the most appropriate arrangement based on the needs of the child or young person presented in the application.

When making a decision about the type of travel assistance to be granted including whether or not a passenger assistant is required, we will consider:

  • the specific special educational needs of the pupil
  • if the family or carer might want to be financially supported to make their own travel arrangements
  • where applicable, the type of vehicle the pupil will be travelling in
  • the length of the journey
  • if the pupil is physically able to walk the distance between home and school
  • if the pupil needs to be accompanied be a walking escort or passenger assistant

If a decision is made that travel assistance should be granted this will usually be in a shared vehicle with other pupils.

Wherever possible, parents or carers are expected to take their child to and from a pick up or drop off point. These points will normally be within half a mile of the home and consideration will be given to the age and needs of the child and the route to and from the pick up and drop off point.

Solo transport

Solo transport for pupils such as private taxis will only be considered in exceptional circumstances and only if there is clear evidence to support the need. Solo pupil transport granted will be for a limited time and pupil’s are expected to return to shared transport after the period.

All travel arrangements will be subject to an annual application process to ensure that arrangements take into account the child or young person’s personal development with opportunities that promote independence and any changing circumstances such as medical needs.

The expectation is that as the pupil grows older they are supported to use public transport when possible.

Cash allowances

We offer travel allowances to parents or carers to help them cover the costs of taking their children to school. A cash allowance of 40p per mile is payable for the journey to and from school. The value of the allowance will be agreed in advance and claims can then be made monthly based on the pupil’s attendance which is checked regularly.

We encourage parents to take their children to school if:

  • the child has a life threatening condition and may need sudden, urgent treatment or medication
  • the route isn’t already served by transport and the cost of transport would be too high

We do not offer travel allowances to parents who choose to take their children to school themselves when there is a place available on existing contracted transport.