Consultation on proposed changes to Sandwell's SEND Transport Policy
Sandwell Council is consulting on proposed changes to the Home to School/College and Adult Learner Transport Policy. The consultation will run between Wednesday 12 June 2019 and Monday 22 July 2019. Any responses received after this time may be considered but not included in the consultation. Once the consultation has closed, we will review the responses and prepare a report for Sandwell councillors on the results. They will consider any changes which may need to be made and will make a decision in August 2019. If approved by councillors, the revised policy will be operational from 2 September 2019. You can access the online survey by clicking here. You can also download the explanatory consultation document by clicking here.
The proposed changes are as follows:
- Creating one policy document to cover all home to school/college travel assistance to include adult learners.
- Operational changes in the way we provide transport as well as how parents can access SEND transport.
- Offering more children and young people training to develop independent travel skills and the use of sustainable travel modes.
- Clarity and provision for exceptional circumstances.
- Greater use of personal transport budgets.
- Simplifying the appeals procedure.
Some children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities may require help to get to the school that is right for them. This may be because the school is too far away or because they are not able to get to the school safely by themselves.
Under the terms of the 1996 Education Act, the council is required to provide assistance with travel to what the act terms 'eligible children'.
In relation to special educational needs and disability, the Act defines an eligible child as one of statutory school age (between five and 16) who has a special educational need or disability which means that they cannot reasonably be expected to walk to school because of their mobility problems or because of associated health and safety issues related to their special educational needs (SEN) or disability. However, in Sandwell, we will provide assistance with transport to children with SEND from the start of their Reception year in school.
For eligible children assistance with travel can take a number of forms:
- a course of independent travel training so that the child or young person can travel safely by themselves
- a travel pass for the child or young person and an accompanying adult
- reimbursement of mileage costs to a parent / carer who transports the child or young person
- provision of a place in a vehicle which will transport the child or young person to school.
For more details, here is Sandwell's SEND travel assistance policy.. Please be aware that this policy is currently under review and may change in the near future.
The Integrated Passenger Transport Unit has also produced a Parent / Carer / Adult Guide re transport for children and young people with SEND
The council will not provide assistance with travel for children before they enter their Reception year or for students aged 16 or over who are attending a further education college or an independent specialist provider
Other sources of support for assistance with travel for students aged 16-19 can be found in the Transport policy statement for students 16 - 19
Apply for help
All applications for travel assistance must come through your child's school. Please contact them for help with the application process. Once the application has been made the Special Educational Needs (SEN) Service determines who, based on the policy and the application form, is eligible for travel assistance.