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School transport for post-16 learners

Author: Angela Sandhal

There has been some concern recently expressed about the availability of school transport for post 16 learners.

Whilst it is correct that local authorities do not have a legal duty to provide home to school transport in all cases for children who are no longer of compulsory school age, they can agree to provide transport in some cases and this is especially important for children with special educational needs and particularly those with Education, Health and Care Plans who may not be able to walk to school or walk unsupervised.

Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council has a school transport policy which says in relation to special education needs students and pupils up to the age of 19:

“Each pupil or student identified by the LA as having Special Educational Needs (SEN) (either medical, behavioural or learning), will have their individual transport needs assessed against set agreed criteria, taking into account their age, mobility and the effect of their special educational needs on their ability to travel.”

The key point is that each child is entitled under this policy to have their travel needs assessed.

There is also a right of appeal if parents or young people do not agree with the outcome. It may be helpful when making an appeal to obtain a note from your child’s GP, therapist, doctor or teacher supporting your application if this is not already available.

As a last resort, parents may be able to refer their case to the Local Government Ombudsman or make a claim for judicial review in court.

If you would like more information about challenging a decision that affects your child, please contact us for a no obligation chat about your options.

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