SEND Travel

Statutory school age pupils (age 5-16)

Suffolk County Council (SCC) Funded school travel will be provided for children attending their nearest suitable school, inside or outside of Suffolk, where the distance from home to school is over the statutory walking distance:

  • More than 2 miles (3218 metres) from home for children aged under 8
  • More than 3 miles (4827 metres) from home for children aged 8 and over

Children are entitled to SCC funded travel however far the distance is to their nearest suitable school if they cannot reasonably be expected to walk to that school (or other place where they might be receiving education under s 19(1) Education Act 1996), accompanied as necessary, because of their SEN, a disability or mobility problem. We may require supporting medical or professional evidence if applying for this reason which will be reviewed as appropriate.

Travel for children and young people with Education Health and Care Plans (EHCP)

For pupils with an EHCPSCC will identify a school that is the nearest suitable school, if this school is named in the plan and is over the distance criteria detailed above, Suffolk County Council funded school travel will be provided.

The parents’ or young person’s preferred school or college might be further away from their home than the nearest school or college that has been identified as the school that can meet the child or young person’s SEND.

In such a case, Suffolk County Council can name the nearer school or college in the EHCP if it considers it to be appropriate for meeting the child or young person’s SEND.

If the parents prefer the school or college that is further away, SCC may agree to name this but it will the responsibility of the family to make their own travel arrangements.

View the full School travel policy.

Any significant change to personal circumstances, a change of school or a house move will require a reassessment of eligibility in line with the School Travel Policy. We require 20 working days to assess applications.

You can make applications for the next academic year from 1 March until 31 May.

If you have applied for funded School travel and this has been refused, you will have the right to challenge this decision.

Post 16 learners

SCC funded Post-16 travel is not generally available, this includes students with an Education Health and Care Plan (Education, Health and Care plan), however, subsidised travel will be provided to their nearest suitable school sixth form or Post-16 centre where they meet the criteria of the post-16 policy.

Assessment for learners with SEND When determining whether to provide Post-16 travel SCC will consider:

  • The needs of those young people, who without Post-16 travel support, would be unable to attend an education or training establishment;
  • Distance and journey time from the young person’s home to establishments of education and training and the cost of travel. Reasonable maximum one-way travel is usually considered to be 75 minutes;
  •  The nature of the route or alternative routes which the student could reasonably be expected to take;
  •  The reasons why a student wishes to attend one establishment rather than another, where it makes sense to do so;
  •  Anything recorded in an EHC Plan about travel to the Post-16 provider;
  • Where there is a nearer institution which is suitable and can provide the same or similar qualification(s) or course;
  • The best use of SCC’s resources;
  • The nature of the student’s SEND. This includes the physical ability of the young person to walk, accompanied as necessary by a responsible adult to the learning provision or a pick-up point;
  • Whether the young person has received Independent Travel Training skills, is able to travel independently and his or her ability to access public transport or transport operated by others.

All post-16 students are required to make a contribution towards their travel costs.  

School YearAutumn TermSpring TermSummer TermTotal Per Year

There are usually no concessions for students on low incomes. A bursary scheme is available on the GOV.UK website, if available, are administered by the student’s Post-16 provider. Please check their policy and eligibility criteria as not all Post-16 providers offer the bursary scheme.

If the student or their parents request a placement that is not at their nearest suitable provision, they will need to make their own travel arrangements.

View the full Post-16 Travel Policy

Any significant change to personal circumstance, e.g. a change of address will require a reassessment in line with the Post 16 Transport Policy. We require 20 working days to assess applications.

You can make applications for the next academic year from 1st March until 31st May.

If you have applied for transport and this has been refused, you will have the right to challenge this decision.

Parental agreements

When there are no suitable school travel routes available or due to particular SEND requirements, we may offer parents/guardians a parental agreementSCC will pay a fixed cost per mile towards costs for the parent/guardian to transport a child to their place of education.

Further information

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