Home to School Transport: Consultation
On 12 December 2017, Suffolk County Council launched a consultation on proposals to change school and post-16 travel policies. The consultation will run until Wednesday 28 February 2018. Two changes which may directly affect your family if the proposals go ahead are:
1. Free travel for 11-16 year olds would no longer be provided, where a student is not attending their nearest school.
2. Subsidised travel for 16-18 year olds would no longer be provided.
Suffolk County Council is hoping to save money by making these changes from September 2019. The aim of the consultation is to seek views from the public on the three options listed below:
Option 1: Change the policy so that children only get free transport to their nearest school, rather than to their catchment school, which is the current policy. This would mean that children who are currently receiving free transport to a school that is not their nearest would no longer qualify for free transport. Parents would be faced with the choice of organising their own transport or moving their child to a different school, mid-way through their education.
Option 2: Change the policy in exactly the same way as Option 1, but on a year-by-year basis. This would mean that children currently receiving free transport a school which is not their nearest would continue to qualify for free transport until they leave that school. However children joining a new school would only receive free transport if that school was their nearest. Siblings would not qualify for free transport to a school which was not their nearest. Suffolk County Council has estimated that this option would cost an additional £8.8 million.
Option 3: Make no changes to the school travel policy but make savings from other services provided by Suffolk County Council.
One of these options will ultimately be implemented; there is no fourth option under consideration.
Click here to have your say