If you are unable to make arrangements for school transport then please speak to a member of the transport team on 0345 155 1019.
- School age children (5-16)
Councils must make home to school travel arrangements for eligible children to attend their “qualifying school”.
What is a qualifying school?
The relevant qualifying school is the nearest school with places available that provides education appropriate to the age, ability and aptitude of the child and any special educational needs the child may have.
What are eligible children?
Eligible children are those who:
- Cannot walk to school because of their special educational needs, disability or mobility problem;
- Cannot walk to school safely because of the nature of the route;
- Live outside “statutory walking distance” from the school (two miles for children under eight and three miles for children over eight) and
- Are entitled to assistance on low income grounds
What is a designated school?
For most schools in Devon, there is admissions priority for children if they live in the designated area, or ‘catchment area’ for a school. Most schools have designated areas. If you live in the school’s designated area, that school is your designated school.
Children of statutory school age with a statement of SEN or an EHCP may qualify for transport where Devon County Council names a school or setting to meet specific needs and this is not a result of parental preference.
Devon County Council will provide transport to the “designated” primary or secondary school serving your home address. Transport will be agreed for children over the age of eight attending their nearest primary school or the primary school designated as serving the home address where they live over two miles away.
How do you make the decision to provide transport?
All requests for transport are considered on a case by case basis. Parents may be required to provide information to help officers reach a considered conclusion on whether there is a duty to provide transport. It should be noted that the duty to provide transport assistance pre 16 is different to the duties for students of Post 16 age. There is a different information section on transport for Post 16 students.
What if I disagree with the decision?
Any parent who remains dissatisfied with a decision reached can ask about details of the two stage appeal process available to them.
- Post 16 students
Devon County Council looks at provision of transport for all Post 16 students very differently to the way the Council considers transport for children of compulsory school age (5-16 years). For example the Council will not provide free transport, nor is there a direct duty to provide transport for Post 16 students. This applies to all Post 16 students regardless of their educational establishment.
Who will provide transport?
There is an expectation that, where possible, it is for parents to make and pay for transport arrangements. This will apply even where students are remaining at their current educational establishment.
Are there any spare seats on school transport routes?
For some establishments a limited number of vacant seats may be available. Vacant seats are not free transport and have to be paid for.
Is there any other support available?
For students who attend the nearest appropriate school or college, if there are:
- no vacant seats available AND
- you are not able to make or support your own transport arrangement AND
- you cannot use public transport
then you can ask the school transport team for an “assessment of travel need”.
Transport officers will guide you through this process however it is for parents to demonstrate and evidence a need for transport and that transport, if not agreed, represents a clear barrier to attendance. This is only available for students who attend their nearest appropriate school or college.
Individual schools and colleges receive bursary funding and this can sometimes be used to support transport. Information on this is available from individual schools and colleges.
- Post-16 Transport Guidance for Local Authorities – October 2017
- Devon’s Post 16 transport policy for 2017-18
- Traveline South West – information about public transport routes
- Call the My Devon Transport Team on 0345 155 1019 for information about vacant seats