Information and documents providing guidance on commonly asked home-to-school questions




If your pass is lost, stolen or broken then it will need to be replaced at a cost of £10

Find out further information including how much it might cost

Apply and pay for a replacement pass



Check if your child is eligible for home to school or college transport using our simple decision tree (opens in a new window) or download our travel eligibility flowchart (290KB)

You can find information and guidance about how to apply for a home to school pass on Suffolkonboard.

Yes, we will require a passport-sized photograph to include on the pass.

The quickest and easiest way to provide this is to upload your photo online

If your child is entitled, you will receive a letter in July to provide details of this entitlement. 

Haven’t received anything in the post? The quickest and easiest way to let us know is by completing the online Passenger Transport report form.


If you are on low income you will need to contact us: 


Applied, but still not got your pass?

Have you provided the photo for the pass? This is by far the most common reason people haven’t received their pass.

You can provide this quickly and easily by uploading a photo online

Once you have uploaded your child’s photo, the soonest you will receive your pass is 10 working days. However, this may take longer during busy periods.

Children will get free transport if their parents get the maximum level of working tax credit or the child is entitled to free school meals (due to low income) and they are either:

  • aged 8 to 11 years old and the school is over 2 miles and under 3 miles (attending the catchment, nearest, or designated school for your address)
  • aged 11 to 16 years old and the school is 2 to 6 miles away (when attending one of the 3 nearest schools for your address)
  • aged 11 to 16 years old attending the nearest school to accommodate their religion/belief and living 2-15 miles away

You can check your eligibility for school transport assistance.

All year 11 students were written to with information about transport options when moving on to post 16 education, including this document (PDF 160KB)

You have to apply by 31st May every year to be considered for this transport. Any applications received after this date will be considered late and may not be assessed in time for the start of the academic year.

Applying for spare seats:

Priority is given to arranging transport to children entitled for free home to school transport.

Applications for post-16 transport are the next to be assessed.

We will then assess spare seat applications. We will write to you as soon as an outcome is reached, but transport may not be set-up and functional until the October half-term.

You will need to make other travel arrangements until we contact you. We will not be able to provide a refund for any travel costs incurred whilst you are waiting to hear from us. 


After a spare seats application is submitted:

The soonest you will receive your pass is 10 working days following your application and payment, providing the photo form has been submitted.

Your pass may take longer during busy periods. 

It costs £10 to replace a travel pass that has been:

  • lost
  • stolen
  • damaged/broken

You can apply for a replacement travel pass online

If you have an operational issue or a question related to home to school transport not listed above, please use this form to raise a report.

  • Age: A child is said to be 5 if their 5th birthday falls within that school year; this is the reception year. Children will normally have their 8th birthday in Year 3 and will be 16 in Year 11.

  • Catchment area: This is the published catchment area for each school used by the county council to prioritise admissions to the school. Where a school has converted to become an academy and the council is not the admissions authority, it is the area formerly used by the council to prioritise admissions.

  • Discretionary: Any help with travel from home to school or college that is not required by Law.

  • Journey time: We assess “journey time” by calculating the door-to-door time by the use of public transport. This assessment will take into account any walking time to the pick-up point, time gaps in public transport connections, walking time from any set down point to the school or college etc.

  • Safety: You consider that the nearest available walking route is unsafe for an accompanied child pedestrian to their nearest or catchment school.

  • School Bus: This is a vehicle wholly contracted for eligible students; this does not apply to public services.

  • Nearest School: In some circumstances, you may live in an area of Suffolk where your catchment school is not your physically closest school. As you may be eligible for free transport (if both schools meet the distance criteria) you will need to contact us so we can assess this.

  • Nearest Suitable school: The nearest qualifying school with places available that provides education appropriate to the age, ability and aptitude of the child, and any special educational needs that the child may have. The nearest qualifying school for a child with special educational needs may well be different than for other children. When considering eligibility for transport, for a school to be considered suitable it must have places available.

  • Transport Priority Area: Area in which free transport is offered to a particular school. In most cases this follows the catchment area used by Admissions but for locations close to a free school, this does not always follow the catchment area used by Admissions.

  • Placed: The child has been placed at a school by a Local Authority Officer; this includes a placement at the nearest suitable school with places available if none of your preferences can be met or to a special school or specialist unit on the grounds of special educational needs).
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