The Children's Transport team implements the transport policy and strategic planning for all aspects of school transport for pupils and students to and from school, college and other places of education. This is in line with legal requirements and the Leeds City Council transport policy. The team oversees SEN transport support arrangements that are made for children and young people up to the age of 25, who have special needs or learning difficulties.
Door-to-door transport is organised where necessary on our behalf by Leeds City Council's Passenger Transport department.
The transport team works closely with Metro (the West Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive) to make sure adequate school transport is available (school buses, for example) to and from mainstream schools attended by children who live in Leeds. The team that assesses whether mainstream children and young people are eligible for education transport support to and from school or college without having to pay the appropriate fare is also based at Metro.
A new transport policy
The Leeds City Council Executive Board has approved a further revised transport policy for Leeds, which came into effect on the 1st December 2013. It means that over the period October 2013 to July 2015 there will be a phased withdrawal of funding for the following current discretionary services:-
- free transport between home and school or college at age 16+
- free school transport to faith schools
- free school transport to non-nearest schools of parental choice, in circumstances where the council is unable to provide a place at an appropriate school within the statutory walking distance.
- free transport on the basis of parental preference on the grounds of the parent's religion or belief for their child to be educated in a non-faith educational setting.
- free transport on the basis of parental preference on the grounds of the parent's religion or belief for their child to be educated in a single-sex educational setting
For all these services the following apply:
Free travel rights continue until 31st August 2015 for those who:
- transferred from primary to secondary school in September 2013 and met eligibility criteria under the previous policy
- transferred to a school sixth form or to a College of Further Education in September 2013 and met eligibility criteria under the previous policy
- use school transport to faith schools and met eligibility criteria under the previous policy
Students currently engaged in two year courses of study within school sixth forms, or at colleges of further education and who have qualified for free travel under the existing policy, will receive protection to the end of their present course, or until the end of the academic year 2015, whichever occurs first (assuming there is no change of address)
Post 16 special educational needs students – non-statutory provision
In respect of post 16 students with special educational needs (SEN), Leeds City Council agreed that more work will be done, in partnership, to determine the detailed changes to our non-statutory home to school/college transport provision. This will be underpinned by the principle of moving from centrally procured services, towards supporting more personalised budgets, so that families can buy-in the services they require to support their children. Any new model will ensure we meet the obligations contained in the Children and Families Bill, currently before parliament. As this further work is taking place, there will be no changes to the current arrangements for current post-16 SEN students until September 2014. A further report will be taken to Executive Board during the academic year ready for implementation of any final recommendations in September 2014.
If you would like to apply for assistance with home to school or home to college travel arrangements during the academic year 2013 to 2014, you can download and print the appropriate application form from the documents section.
If you live in the Leeds district and would like further information regarding help with school transport, other education travel costs, a paper copy of one of the application forms or a paper copy of the current policy, please call the Leeds Education Transport Assessment Team at Metro on 0113 348 1121.
If you require any further information please do not hesitate to contact the transport team, by going to the email link in Contact Us .