Legislation and guidance

Education Act 1996

Section 508A of the Education Act 1996 places a duty on local authorities in England to assess the school travel needs of all children and persons of sixth form age in their area and to assess and promote the use of sustainable modes of travel.

Section 508B of the Act sets out the general duties placed on local authorities to make such school travel arrangements as they consider necessary for ‘eligible children’ within their area, to facilitate their attendance at the relevant educational establishment. Such arrangements must be provided free of charge.

Section 508C of the Act provides local authorities with discretionary powers to make school travel arrangements for other children not covered by Section 508B but the transport does not have to be free.

Section 509 AD of the Act places a duty on the LA, when exercising its travel functions, to have regard, amongst other things, any wish of a parent for their child to be educated at a particular school on the grounds of the parents’ religion or belief. Religion or belief in this instance means any religious or philosophical belief.

This duty is in addition to the duty on the LA to make travel arrangements for children from low income families who attend the nearest school preferred on grounds of religion or belief, where they live between 2 and 15 miles from home.

Section 9 of the Education Act 1996 provides that in exercising all duties and powers under the Education Acts, the Secretary of State and local authority shall have regard to the general principle that pupils are to be educated in accordance with their parents’ wishes, so far as that is compatible with the provision of efficient instruction and training and the avoidance of unreasonable expenditure. However, there is no general statutory duty requiring the local authority to provide free transport to a faith school.

S509AA and s509AB Education Act 1996 requires the Local Authority to specify what transport and financial support are necessary to facitilate the attendance of persons of sixth form age receiving education or training. S508AB requires the olicy to set out the arrangements for facilitating the attendance at educational establishment of disabled persons and persons with learning disabilities.

Section 508F of the Act places a duty on local authorities to make any transport or other arrangements that they consider necessary, or that the Secretary of State directs, for the purpose of facilitating the attendance of learners who are aged 19 or over at certain educational establishments. The transport must be provided free of charge.

Children Act 1989

Section 17 (1) Children Act 1989 creates a general duty on Children’s Services to safeguard and promote the welfare of children within their area who are in need

Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act 1970

Where a local authority has functions under Part 3 of the Children Act 1989 in relation to a disabled child and the child is ordinarily resident in their area, they must, in exercise of those functions,  make  any  arrangements  within  subsection  (6)  that  they  are  satisfied  it  is necessary for them to make in order to meet the needs of the child.

Care Act 2014

This Act together with a number of regulations and statutory guidance is the base on which social care will develop over the next few decades.  It enshrines the new statutory principle of wellbeing.

Children and Families Act 2014

This Act describes how children and young people with special educational needs or who are disabled (SEND) get the support they need. It came into force on 1 September 2014.

Statutory guidance

The following statutory guidance documents apply in relation to travel provision and assistance: