The Travel Assessment and Training Team are responsible for travel solutions between home and school for children and young people with special educational needs.
The Assessment Team will look at the information you provide and make a decision on what travel support is needed. The team may ask to visit you or ask for relevant documentation if more information is required. The local authority must assess a child’s transport needs individually.
If your child has a Statement of Special Educational Needs (SEN) or an Educational Health Care Plan (EHCP), or is currently undergoing an assessment for an EHCP, they may be eligible for travel support.
How to apply
To apply please complete the Travel Request form. You should provide clear information about your child’s SEN, disability and any health needs when you apply for travel support. Please note that all decisions are based on the information available to the officers, at the time of making the decision. Once the fully-completed application has been received it will be discussed at travel panel, where a decision will be made. The Assessment Team will contact you in writing within 15 working days after the panel has taken place with the decision.
Pre-school & nursery travel
Special Educational Needs Transport is currently provided to children below school age at the council’s discretion, and our current Special Educational Needs Transport Policy does not make any specific reference to children of this age.
This is currently under review.
Under 16 travel support to schools
Assistance with travel may be provided to children who live less than the statutory walking distance from school if:
- he or she is the subject of a SEN or an EHCP
- the need for support is apparent from their SEN or EHCP
- the child is attending the nearest qualifying school as named in the Statement or EHCP
- it is the nearest school to meet your child’s needs
- the outcome of an assessment of need considers travel support necessary
Where a parent requests that a child should attend a school other than the nearest qualifying school named in the Statement or EHCP, assistance will be provided on the express condition that the parent agrees to pay any additional costs incurred by the Council as a consequence of that request. Those additional costs will be calculated on the basis of the additional mileage incurred.
These criteria can be found in the Sheffield Home to School Transport Policy.
You may express a preference for the nearest faith school to your home address which is also beyond the statutory walking distance.
Where your preference is for a faith school which is not the nearest one to your home, the normal transport policy rules apply and responsibility for transport rests with you.
The exception to this is where a pupil with SEN is placed in an integrated resource within a faith school. In this instance the SEN Policy will apply.
Post 16 travel support
Once a student with SEN or an EHCP has reached age 16 and has finished compulsory education, there is no automatic entitlement to free Post 16 travel support to school college or place of learning.
If a student is eligible for travel support in the form of a minibus/taxi there will be a contribution of £540.
The Council's Post 16 Education Transport Policy explains what support your child may be given.
Independent travel training
Independent travel training is for young people aged 10 to 19 years old who have a Statement of Special Educational Needs (SEN) or an Educational Health Care Plan (EHCP), or are currently undergoing an assessment for an EHCP. This service is free of charge.
All young people will be supported and encouraged to travel independently to and from school or college, when it is assessed as reasonable for them to do so. Where a young person is offered independent travel training the process will begin with an initial assessment of their skills and abilities.
The training provided by the Assessment and Training Officer will be targeted to individual needs and development. The training plan will be specifically tailored to the young person and aims to develop their independence along their own route to and from school or college. The Assessment and Training Officer will withdraw their support at an appropriate pace until the young person is able to complete the journey independently. It is expected that where independent travel training is offered as a travel support option, a young person will take up this training.
Top-up training will be available to support children and young people with transition when moving school or college. To apply please contact us.
If we advise you that you aren’t eligible for free home to school travel support or you disagree with the decision to cease or alter travel support, the following procedure will be adopted:
An appeal will need to be put in writing within 20 working days from receipt of the decision letter. This letter will then be presented to the Manager of the Travel Service, alongside neew evidence and original paperwork for the initial decision to be reconsidered. Further assessment may need to be carried out if applicable.
A response to the appeal will be sent to the parent/carer within 20 working days, stating the decision following the appeal giving reasons and supported by the policy.
An appeal will need to be put in writing 20 working days from receipt of the decision letter to appeal in writing against the stage 1 decision to the Admissions Board. A response to the appeal will be sent to the parent/carer within 40 working days, giving reasons for the decision relating to the Transport Policy. Official minutes from Democratic Services Legal and Governance will be included in the response letter.
A final appeal against this decision can be escalated to the Local Government Ombudson.