Special educational needs travel assistance

Your child may be eligible to receive travel assistance if they are 16 years old or under and have an education, health and care (EHC) plan.

Travel Co-ordination Unit (TCU)

The TCU is responsible for travel solutions between home and school for children and young people with special educational needs or disabilities (SEND).

The TCU will aim to increase choice and better meet the diverse needs of the county’s pupils with SEND. It will do this by offering a broader, more flexible, range of assistance options, and promote independent travel wherever possible so that young people are able to lead independent lives.

Who this applies to

This process will only apply to children 16 years old or under who are issued with an education health and care (EHC) plan. Applying through the TCU is the only way for travel assistance applications to be considered. Once applications are received, the TCU will then be responsible for reviewing and processing them together with any checks that are required.

If a pupil has special educational needs and attends a post-16 setting you will need to apply for post-16 travel assistance. See the code of conduct for children with special educational needs.

Eligibility

Your child may be eligible for assistance if:

  • they have an EHC plan
  • the school named in the EHC plan of your child or young person is the nearest suitable school, as determined by the Local Authority
  • the school your child or young person attends is beyond the statutory walking distance
  • they are attending their nearest suitable school, and they have a condition where they cannot reasonable be expected to walk, and this is supported by appropriate medical and/or specialist advice
  • either you or your partner are disabled, such that you are unable to accompany your child to school

For more details, please read our home to school transport policy below.

Policy changes made due to recommendations received by the LGSCO for a recent complaint investigation. The Local Authority have made the changes to ensure that they abide by the LGSCO outcome.

Home to school transport and travel assistance policy - Academic year 2024 to 2025

Apply

Applications for the beginning of the new academic year in September should be submitted to us before 31 May. If we receive an application after this, we can't guarantee that travel assistance will be in place before the new school year.

We may call or email if we need more information to help decide what support is needed.

We will acknowledge receipt of your application within 10 working days and usually, we will make a decision by 15 August.

Please don't contact us before this date unless something has materially changed with your application. You should advise us of any changes by emailing [email protected].

Change of school

If you have received an EHC plan which names a new education setting in section I, you must submit a new application for travel assistance.

Any current travel arrangements for students transitioning from primary school to secondary school (academic year 6 to year 7) but remaining at the same school, will not automatically be renewed - in this situation, a new application form must be submitted to the TCU for consideration.

A change in home address

Tell us of a change in your home address if the child is currently getting travel assistance.

You must also make sure that the EHC team has been notified of this change of address so that the EHC plan is updated.

Last updated 16 January 2024