View frequently asked questions for school transport;
How do I apply for free school transport?
There is no formal ‘application’ process for school transport. Details of pupils attending each school will be provided to the Integrated Transport Unit (ITU) for assessment in accordance with the eligibility criteria. If your child is eligible for free school transport, the necessary travel arrangements will then be made.
- Check eligibility criteria online
Does my child need to keep their bus pass?
Yes - your child's bus pass remains valid from the first day of school to either the end of Year 11 or Year 13.
What if my child's bus pass is lost or damaged?
If your child loses their pass, your child can obtain a temporary travel slip from the school reception which will allow them to travel to school for two weeks whilst their replacement pass is being ordered.
There is a £7.10 administration charge for the printing of a replacement pass.
What if my child hasn't received a travel pack or letter of authorisation?
If you have not completed the school admission form for your child to attend your chosen school then you will need to do so by contacting the school admissions team on 01443 744000. If you have completed the school admission form and received a letter confirming their placement at the school, then you will need to contact us on 01443 425001.
Can my school ask the transport provider to allow my child to travel without a bus pass?
No - All secondary learners that are eligible for transport are provided with bus passes that must be used to access school transport.
Can my child’s friend travel on the school bus with them even though they are not eligible?
No - Only eligible pupils, who are in possession of a valid bus pass can travel on school transport. All seats have been allocated to eligible pupils. If additional learners are travelling then this may lead to the bus becoming overcrowded.
What if my address changes?
If you have recently changed your address you will need to inform the school who will then notify the ITU. The ITU will verify the address against the transport eligibility criteria. If your child is eligible, a bus pass will be issued and transport arrangements made.
If you are unable to contact the school (due to school holidays), you can advise the ITU directly by completing the online form, but you must still advise the school immediately of the change once the school is open. Failure to notify the school may result in free home to school transport being withdrawn.
What if by moving my child no longer lives in the catchment area of their current school?
If you move to an address outside the local area of the school/college to which transport has been provided you will not continue to receive free home to school transport
What if by moving my child no longer meets the eligibility criteria?
If you move to an address which moves you closer than the 1.5 miles (primary pupils) and 2 miles (secondary pupils) to the school/college to which transport has been provided then you will not continue to receive free home to school transport.
How does parental preference of a school affect entitlement to free home to school transport?
If you choose to place your child in a school other than the nearest suitable or catchment school then you are totally liable to organise, and pay for the cost of transport to the chosen school.
Bus Journey Information
How can I find out information about school bus times and pick up points?
Details of all school transport routes, transport providers, pick-up points and timings are available on the Council’s website.
For details of other commercial routes that are available for those pupils who are not entitled to free school transport, please visit the Traveline Cymru website. The website provides public transport timetable information and allows you to also plan your journey.
Is school transport provided from home to school?
School transport is not normally provided from the pupil’s home address but from an approved pick up point on the main transport routes.
How long should my child have to wait for the school transport?
Pupils are advised to be at the designated bus stop 10 minutes before the scheduled pick up time and wait up to 20 minutes after its scheduled departure. It should be noted that these are approximate times only and can vary due to fluctuations in traffic flow.
How long should the school journey take?
The Council does not specify a time limit for journeys. However, journey times should be reasonable, taking into account the age and individual needs of the learners, and the nature, purpose and circumstances of each journey. Where parents/guardians express preferences for their children to attend voluntary aided (faith) schools or Welsh/dual language schools that are some distance away from their homes, journeys may generally be longer.
Can my child be transported to any other address other than the home address?
NO - Transport is provided to and from the home address or nearest recognised stop only. No other address or drop off point will be authorised.
Can my child use a different service to the one that has been allocated?
NO - Each school vehicle has an individual contract number and only pupils issued with a pass or letter of authoriastion for that vehicle may travel. Anyone else will be turned away by the driver.
If you wish your child to use a different service, for example returning regularly to another family member’s home, it may be possible to purchase a pass at a cost of £122.40 an academic year, where seats are available. If there are no seats available then a seat cannot be sold.
Do I need to be available to receive my child off school transport?
Yes – for primary pupils only. You, or a responsible adult, are required to be available at least 10 minutes earlier than the agreed pick up and drop off times, as detailed on the school bus timetable, to handover or receive your child off school transport.
Should parents / guardians not be available at the bus stop, transport providers are advised that pupils are to be taken to a place of safety, for example, the nearest police station or social services office.
Where parents fail to be available to collect their child, then transport may be removed until appropriate arrangements are in place for the child to be collected by a responsible adult.
Parents / guardians should also note that transport providers are not permitted to accept written or verbal instructions allowing their child to be dropped at the stop unsupervised.
Non Entitled Pupils
My child is not entitled to free school transport, is there any other help available?
Any spare seats on the mainstream school transport service will be sold to those who do not qualify for free school transport.
How can I purchase a seat?
Seats available for purchase will be released when the availability has been assessed. It is not generally possible to make seats available until the number of school leavers is known.
Applications should be made by telephone on 01443 425001.
If I purchased a spare seat for my child in the last academic year, will I have to re-apply?
YES - letters are sent to all parents who purchased a spare seat in the previous academic year, reminding them to re-apply if appropriate.
Can I re-apply to purchase a seat at any time for the next academic year?
NO - seats become available for sale once the current academic year has finished. You will receive a letter advising you when you can apply to purchase.
What if I complete and submit my application before this date?
Any application forms received before the release date will not be considered and you will need to re-apply from the release date.
My child may not use the bus every day; do I still need to pay the full amount?
YES - You are required to pay the full amount, as you are reserving a seat which must be paid for, whether you travel or not.
CCTV may be in operation on your school transport. This can be used to identify any passengers who break the rules within the Travel Behaviour Code. It can also be used to safeguard passengers, escorts and drivers.
CCTV can be used by nominated officers of the Integrated Transport Unit, Schools or the transport company in the event of a legal action being taken by any stake holder.
CCTV footage is only monitored if incidents are reported by any party and is protected so it can only be viewed by specified officers.
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