General information

Home address

The child requiring travel assistance must be resident in Trafford and we will make checks to verify the address. We may request further proof of address if records do not match.

Travel assistance for children with SEND will be to and from their home address. Home is defined as where the child is normally and habitually resident. Where there is shared residency between two parent/carers, either or both addresses may be considered to be the home.

For children with SEND, parent/carers may request to use an alternative address but it will not automatically by accepted. We can only consider a maximum of one alternative address and it must not be further away from school than the home address.

Times of day

Travel assistance will be provided at the start and end of the school day. It is not available during the course of the school day.

Between schools

Children registered at one school may visit another school for integration purposes or to access an additional educational support package or placement provided by the school at which they are registered. Where this happens, the school is responsible for making the necessary transport arrangements.

Childcare providers and after school clubs

Travel assistance will not usually be provided to day nurseries, preschool playgroups, childminders, after school clubs or activity providers, unless there are exceptional circumstances. For example, a 3 year old child in receipt of 30 hours free childcare who is undergoing an EHC needs assessment at a primary special school and gets their extended hours at a childcare provider. Each request will be considered individually on its own merits.

Residential placements

If the child is in a residential placement, transport will be provided as follows:

  • Weekly residential placement – travel arrangements will be made to school on Monday and from school on Friday each week.
  • Termly residential placement – travel arrangements will be provided at the beginning and end of each term and mid-term holiday.
  • Children requiring a 52 week placement – travel arrangements will be provided up to a maximum of 3 return journeys per year.

Other benefits and allowances

Travel assistance will be provided free of charge regardless of any benefits or allowances the parent/carers or children receive. This includes:

  • Disability living allowance (DLA)
  • Personal independence payment (PIP)
  • Foster carer allowance

Change of circumstances

If a child moves home, changes school or there is another significant change in circumstances, this may affect their eligibility for travel assistance or the suitability of the travel assistance provided. All changes in circumstances should be reported immediately and it is the parent/carer responsibility to make a new application for travel assistance.

Withdrawal of travel assistance awarded in error

If travel assistance has been awarded in error, we have the right to withdraw this. We will consider the individual circumstances of each case to decide if there are exceptional reasons for the travel assistance to continue. If we decide to withdraw travel assistance, we will give 6 weeks’ notice.

Journey times

Every effort will be made to keep journey times to a minimum whilst making sure we make the best use of our resources. Government guidelines for a normal journey are:

  • Primary school age – no more than 45 minutes each way.
  • Secondary school age – no more than 75 minutes each way.

There may be times when it is not possible to meet these journey times. For example if a child attends an out of area school or due to circumstances outside our control such as traffic congestion, accidents or adverse weather conditions.

Charging for pre-school age children

The charge will be £170 per term, reduced to £85 per term for low income families who meet the criteria for free school meals.

We cannot provide transport until we have received a signed payment agreement form. Charges will be made termly and parent/carers will be invoiced in monthly instalments for the term, at the beginning of each term. For example, in the summer term the invoice will be sent in April requesting payment of 4 monthly instalments for April, May, June and July.

Safety on transport and withdrawal of travel assistance

We aim to maintain the highest standards of safety, security and comfort for all children travelling to their destination. Paren/carers also have a responsibility to help maintain these standards and inappropriate behaviour will not be tolerated. Children being transported will be expected to follow the same behaviour code as they do when in school. Head teachers can take action under the school’s behaviour policy to address unacceptable behaviour on transport. We will also monitor unacceptable behaviour and it may result in exclusion from transport.

The withdrawal of transport will be considered on a case by case basis and can be:

  • Temporary – this may be for a specified number of days or weeks
  • Permanent – this may be for the remainder of the school year or longer depending on the circumstances. This could be for serious misbehaviour or persistent cases of misbehaviour.

Parent/carers will become responsible for transporting your own child during any period of exclusion from transport.

For more details about expected standards of behaviour, see transport service standards.