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Dudley Council provides education travel support for eligible children and young people up to the age of 25.

Travel support can come in a variety of forms including travel training, bus pass, personal allowance or other direct transport, as appropriate to individual pupils' needs as determined by Dudley Council.

Home-to-School Transport

All applications for home-to-school travel support are considered on an individual basis. 

Eligibility

Home-to-school travel support is considered only for pupils of statutory school age residing in Dudley (from the term after the pupil's fifth birthday up to the end of Year 11) who:

  • are under eight years of age and live two miles or more from the school or
  • are eight years of age and over and live three miles or more from the school or
  • qualify under an income based assessment and live more than 2 miles from the nearest available primary school or
  • qualify under an income based assessment and live more than 2 but less than 6 miles from any one of the 3 nearest secondary schools or
  • qualify under an income based assessment and live more than 2 but less than 15 miles from the nearest appropriate school chosen on the grounds of faith or belief.

N.B. Ages are taken at 1st September in each school year.

Further information

  • Distance is measured by the shortest available walking route over public rights of way to the nearest relevant phase school (that is, primary or secondary, as appropriate to the age of the pupil) which has a vacant place.
  • For all applications not made under an income based assessment free home-to-school travel support is provided to the nearest phase school with a vacant place and not necessarily the school preferred by parents. The nearest phase school may be maintained by another Council. Free home to school transport is generally only provided where the distance criteria are met.

The home to school policy has recently been updated. Although the basic criteria for provision of transport is mostly the same, this has been done to clarify the policy and to make it easier to use and understand.

From September all new routes will be in place and children who receive home to school transport may see a small change to their service.

The previous framework had expired and we are legally required to re-tender for transport providers. We will continue to work closely with parents, carers, schools and transport providers to ensure transport is effective and efficient.

For more information for parents and carers please view the frequently asked questions document below or contact Dudley Council Plus.

Independent Travel Training Scheme

Trains young people who are transported into schools and colleges by council provided taxi/minibus, to become independent travellers. In the main, this is done using public transport, but if a young person wishes to undertake their chosen journey by bicycle, our trainers can also deliver cycle training.  It is coordinated by Dudley MBC’s Road Safety and Travel Awareness team in partnership with Children’s Services Transport Team, and the Connexions Team.

Do I qualify?

The majority of young people on the scheme have some form of disability or special needs. This may be a learning or physical disability that prevents them from having the skills to travel independently. Some of the children have no experience of being allowed out on their own, or may just require a limited number of bus familiarisation sessions.

To qualify for travel assistance:

• you must be a permanent resident of Dudley MBC 
• if aged up to 8 years, you must live 2 miles or more from the nearest appropriate school via the shortest available walking route 
• if aged 8 to 16, you must live 3 miles or more from the nearest appropriate school via the shortest available walking route
• The nearest appropriate school is the closest school within the catchment area to your home address, which is appropriate to your child's age and which has room in the year group at stated with Dudley School Admission Policy.

For further information on travel for Disabled persons please visit the gov.uk website.

What to expect

  • Our trainers do an initial assessment with all new clients to ascertain individual needs of the young person, and then tailor the training to suit.
  • When a young person begins their training, they are registered with the NOCN, and issued with a course booklet which they work through as they are training.
  • The booklet is verified internally, and is then verified externally by the NOCN who then issue the award in due course to the successful candidate. 

Training Qualification

Our Road Safety and Travel Awareness team are able to offer young people undertaking a course, the opportunity to gain a qualification. The accredited course we have written is called 'Working Towards Independent Travel' and is an Entry Level 1 course worth six credits.

Travel Support Allowance

We believe that many parents, children & young people who are entitled to free school travel support may prefer to make their own arrangements to get their child to school. We understand that the cost and other factors, such as other commitments to other children can  prevent you from making your own travel arrangements. However, we also know that some children find using our taxis/minibuses embarrassing as it makes them stand out from other children and it can significantly increase the time spent travelling, which isn't great for your child or your family time.

Each Travel Support Allowance is tailored to meet the individual family circumstances, and all have been welcomed by the children and families concerned.

How does it work?

Where it has been identified that a Travel Support Allowance may be beneficial, a member of the Travel and Transport Team will discuss with you what, if any, barriers there are that prevent you getting your child to school independently, including the cost of the journey. Consideration is then given to what support Children’s Services can offer to remove these barriers.

An example may be covering the cost of a breakfast and/or after school club for a sibling who attends a different school and also needs taking there by the parent, but we understand that each set of family circumstances are different and consider every family situation as unique.

Where a Travel Support Allowance appears to be of benefit to the family an agreement on a Travel Support Allowance is sought, and if reached then payments are made. These are made monthly in advance and there is no requirement to submit invoices or other evidence. The only condition is that a child must maintain satisfactory attendance at school for payment to be made. This is regularly monitored by the team in collaboration with you and the school.