Transport to the normal area school
We provide transport assistance for secondary school pupils to the end of statutory school age if they don't live within walking distance of their normal area school. This distance as defined in the Education Act 1996 is 3 miles and is measured by the shortest available route.
We normally determine distance measurements using a computerised Geographical Information Mapping System (GIS) using Ordnance Survey information. Distance measurements for existing users (prior to September 2014) may include routes and distance measurements we already hold on file.
The Raising of the Participation Age (RPA) legislation, requiring young people to participate in education or training until the end of the academic year in which they turn 17 (and up to their 18th birthday from 2015), hasn't created any new entitlement to transport for post-16 learners. Bus passes or refunds are issued where appropriate and special contract transport is arranged if public transport isn't available.
There may be exceptions to the transport rules if we agree that the route to the normal area school is dangerous for a child (accompanied as necessary) to undertake on foot.
Transport to other schools
Parents who send their child to a school which isn't their normal area school will not normally receive assistance with transport (children living outside the county attending Derbyshire schools should apply to their home council).
However, assistance with transport will be provided when a child attends a school, other than the normal area school, which is beyond the 3-mile limit but is closer to the child's home than the normal area school.
Transport to faith schools
We ceased to provide a transport subsidy to faith schools from September 2015. Protection was offered to pupils in key years, that is those entering years 6 and 11 in 2015 who were previously entitled by right to assistance. We no longer contract any buses to provide transport to faith schools.
We give a grant to a hardship fund which is administered by the relevant Diocesan authorities. These grants are intended to be used in support of families and pupils particularly disadvantaged by the changes. In particular, those identified as especially vulnerable, which includes pupils living some distance from others travelling to the school and without an alternative means of transport for whom the costs may be prohibitive. Applications will be dealt with by the relevant Diocesan authority directly.
Free school transport
We'll continue to have a duty to provide free school transport for children aged 11 to 16 who are entitled to a free school meal or whose family receives the maximum level of working tax credit to any one of the three nearest suitable schools where the home to school distance is between 2 and 6 miles.
Where the school is preferred on grounds of religion or belief, the distance is between 2 and 15 miles and the school is the nearest appropriate school. Evidence to support religious or philosophical belief will be required. Full details are available via our school transport page
Each year we will check whether parents are still eligible for transport assistance. If parents are no longer eligible, for example because they no longer receive relevant benefits, parents may have to meet their child’s transport costs.
Getting your child to school
Bus passes or refunds are issued where appropriate and special contract transport is arranged if public transport is not available.
Spare places on a contract bus may be provided on a concessionary basis for children who are not normally entitled to free transport, however a fare will be charged.
You can also find out about our policy on transport to primary schools or view our sustainable modes of travel strategy.