Free school transport

Find out if your child aged 4-16 years is entitled to free school transport and how to apply.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Home to school travel update

Following the announcement that schools will be closing to all, except the children of key workers, we are working with all those affected to understand what transport is needed.

Children travelling to school by public bus (either buying their own ticket or given a pass by the council)

Parents of children who will be continuing to attend this week should visit the bus operators’ websites to check the times and routes that will be available. In particular parents should note:

  • journeys at school times may have changed to run slightly earlier or later
  • buses that usually divert to a school gate may no longer do so and children may need to walk from the nearest stop on the ‘standard’ route
  • a change of bus may now be necessary rather than there being a ‘through journey’.

Children who travel on County Council provided transport (coach, minibus or taxi)

Our suppliers have been asked to operate a full service from now until further notice. Due to possible staff shortages, some flexibility will no doubt be needed and appreciated.

All parents who do not accompany their children to school are advised to have a contingency plan agreed with their child in case transport is late or does not arrive. This is particularly important at the moment.

Normally it is the responsibility of parents to get their children to and from school safely. However, your child may be able to get free transport to school if they meet one of the following three criteria.

1. Distance criteria 

Free transport may be provided if a child lives the following distances from their catchment or nearest suitable school:

  • 2 or more miles away for a child under 8
  • 3 or more miles away for a child aged 8 and over.
Check eligibility for distance and apply

If your child is starting secondary school in September the School Transport team will contact you by the end of the summer term if you are eligible for free school transport.

2. Special Educational Needs (SEN)

If your child has an Educational Health and Care Plan (EHCP) or a statement of Special Educational Needs (SEN) we may be able to provide transport.

Find out more

3. Families on low incomes

If your child is eligible for free school meals, or your family receives working tax credit at the maximum level (no deductions), you may be entitled to help with school transport.

Check eligibility for low income and apply
Last updated:
22 March 2020
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