WSCC School/college Transport in September 2020 for Students aged 16+ who have an EHCP (current Year 11s.)
This September the LA had a number of students who have not had the transport help they were hoping for.
Current Year 11s, whether they continue their placement in the same setting or move on to another setting will have to apply for transport assistance to continue. The key messages to pass to parent/carers and students who live in West Sussex and making choices for their Post-16 further education are:
- Apply for transport assistance in May 2020 (even if the student is currently on transport and staying at the same school.)
- The deadline for applications for September 2020 is Friday 3 July 2020.
- An application is needed even if the student claims a fuel allowance.
- There is a contribution which is currently £630 (subject to review, likely to increase) and can be paid in instalments.
- Families with a low income who qualify do not need to pay the contribution.
- Financial help is available from schools/colleges’ Post-16 Bursary Fund.
· Education only funds transport up to the year in which the young person turns 19yrs i.e. he/she must be under 19yrs in the academic year in which they are starting a new course.
· Train and bus passes which can be organised on a student’s behalf (where cheaper for a parent.) If a minibus/taxi is organised the contribution is annual and not dependant on the amount of times a taxi/minibus is used.
Many pupils are looking around colleges and schools at open days. It is important that they understand the implications of the choice of school/college with regard to transport.
The criteria for assistance for students with EHCPs can be viewed at www.westsussex.gov.uk/Post-16transport. In short, the course has to be full time, at the closest suitable school/college offering the course and be over 3 miles walking distance from the home address.
If a comparable course is offered at a closer establishment to the home address then it is extremely unlikely that transport assistance would be offered. The student would then be expected to make their own travel arrangements.
A taxi is only offered in exceptional circumstances and is likely to be time limited, with a review, with an expectation that some travel training (where a student is capable) is undertaken.
Many young people are working towards independent travel. Bus and train passes are therefore regularly issued to students with EHCPs when previously they have travelled by taxi. Plumpton College and Chichester College (Brinsbury campus) run their own college buses, with details on the individual college websites.
For advice about how the choice of school or college may affect transport options please contact the Post-16 team on 0330 222 3588 or email Post16Travel@westsussex.gov.uk prior to making decisions about what school or college to attend. Students should discuss the educational content of a course, if they have any queries, with their Post-16 SENAT Preparation for Adulthood Planning Coordinator.