How will my child get to school?
In most cases parents are responsible for making arrangements for their child to get to school.
If your child attends a designated area school, or the nearest school to your home address, and does not live within walking distance, you may be entitled to free school transport.
Schools are encouraged to promote sustainable journeys to schools, and to develop travel plans in consultation with parents and children. Many schools have travel plans in place which promote walking or cycling to school through various initiatives. Details of the plan can be obtained from the school concerned.
Will my child be entitled to any assistance with transport?
a) If your child is not entitled to free school meals and you are not receiving the maximum level of Working Tax Credit.
For any pupils aged 11 to 16-years-old, transport assistance can be considered where your child attends a designated area school.
Transport to any designated area school will be considered if there is more than one for your address, but not if one of the schools available at the time of application is within safe walking distance of home.
Transport can also be considered in the relatively few cases where the school attended, although not a designated area school, is the nearest available school by radial distance.
Transport in all cases will only be provided if your child lives more than three miles from the school by the shortest safe walking route, unless there is no safe walking route. “Safe” means accompanied if necessary, and the distance limit is set nationally. Walking routes may not necessarily be the same as the route driven by a vehicle.
Note that for children who are entitled to free school transport, this only applies until the end of year 11.
b) If your child is entitled to free school meals, or you receive maximum level Working Tax Credit.
For any pupils aged 11 to 16 years old, transport assistance can in addition be considered if they attend:
a) any one of the 3 nearest schools (by radial distance) to the home address, where the distance travelled is between 2 and 6 miles or
b) the nearest school (by radial distance) preferred on grounds of religion or belief where this is between 2 and 15 miles away. “Belief” is defined by part 2 of the Equality Act 2006.
Schools counted in both cases are those nearest suitable schools at which a place was available at the time of application. Suitable schools include local authority maintained schools and academies, regardless of borough boundaries, but do not include independent schools.
This entitlement will be reviewed on an annual basis and may be withdrawn if families are no longer entitled to free school meals or no longer in receipt of maximum level working tax credit.
How to apply
If you think your child meets the criteria for free transport, complete the form below.
You can find out more by reading our home to school transport policy (PDF document).
Assessments for home to school transport
Assessments for home to school transport will only be processed following receipt of a completed online or postal application form. Home to school transport eligibility and assessments will not be provided over the telephone.