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Some children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) 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.
- a Personal Transport Budget (PTB) which would allow the family to commission their own transport arrangements
All applications will be considered in line with the new Travel Assistance Policy which can be accessed by clicking on the link at the top of this page. There is an open referral system for travel assistance but we would strongly advise parents/carers who are considering making an application for travel assistance on behalf of their child to consult with their child's school/setting/college before doing so.
Applications must be submitted on the correct forms (see downloads section) and incomplete forms will be returned and the application put on hold until the missing information is provided. Signatures are required on completed forms and they must be returned either by secure electronic transfer (Move-It) or by post. Once a compliant form has been received it will be considered by the SEN Transport Panel and a decision as to whether a child is eligible or not for travel assistance will be made. The panel will also determine the type of travel assistance to be offered. This decision will be communicated by letter to parents/carers/learning establishments within 15 working days.
You can access the travel assistance forms by clicking on the appropriate link in the download section at the top of the page.
Following a recent consultation our travel assistance policy has recently changed. Please click on the link in the downloads section to view the policy.
Sandwell Council has a transport policy for post-16 transport, which includes arrangements for pupils with special educational needs and disabilities. You can access this policy by clicking on the link in the downloads section.