If you have recently moved in to temporary accommodation and require transport assistance, please email HTStransport@portsmouthcc.gov.uk

We provide transport to mainstream or special schools for children and young people who meet specific criteria. This is set out in:

For more information contact the specific department involved in providing transport for schools based at Civic Offices:

  • entitlement to travelling assistance – phone 023 9283 4962
  • travelling assistance for children with special educational needs – phone 023 9284 1238
  • transport to school – queries about the transport itself – phone 023 9284 1345
  • children’s social care can be contacted on 023 9284 9111

If you think your child may qualify for travel assistance, you can complete the online application forms for a secondary school bus pass or home to college transport. If your child has a statutory entitlement to school travel you will be contacted by the SEND team or Access & Entitlement Team who will make the necessary arrangements.

Travel assistance for school journeys when your child does not meet the statutory criteria

If your child does not meet the statutory criteria for home to school transport as set out in the Home to school transport policy, in exceptional cases you can apply for transport using the Exceptional Circumstances Criteria, using the online form for assistance with home to school transport on discretionary grounds.

This will be assessed by The Access and Entitlement Team. Transport may be in the form of a bus pass, personal budget or, in some cases, a minibus or car.

Parent and guardians receive the following information in writing when transport arrangements have been made:

  • type of transport
  • name and phone number of the transport provider
  • name of the passenger assistant
  • pick up and set down points
  • start date

Where necessary, we employ passenger assistants trained to look after pupils travelling on school transport. Passenger assistants are not expected to leave the vehicle in order to collect or deliver pupils. Parents must take their child to the vehicle.

Where there is no suitable adult to meet a child who is normally collected from transport, it is our policy for passenger assistants to place the pupil for safety with the duty social worker in children’s social care. The department is located on the fourth floor of the Civic Offices, Guildhall Square, Portsmouth.

When we cannot provide transport for school journeys

We can’t provide travel assistance for:

  • pupils attending a special school or resourced provision other than that designated by us, such as on the preference of parents
  • pupils attending a mainstream school other than their designated catchment school on the preference of parents.
  • taking a pupil to anywhere other than their home address, such as hospital appointments
  • journeys outside normal school start and finish times
  • travelling between school or home and respite care placements, except where agreed in advance by a school transport officer

Transport to school for children and young people with special education needs

Aged 16 or under

Children with a statement of special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) are entitled to local authority travel assistance when the child is attending the nearest suitable school, as designated by the SEND Team, and at least one of the following applies:

  • the distance from home to school is over three miles for children over eight years old, two miles for children aged five to eight. The distance for low income families is two miles.
  • the child has physical or medical difficulties which means they cannot walk from home to school
  • parent has physical or medical difficulties which means they cannot accompany the child to school

If your child (aged 16 or under) meets these criteria, please use the online form for assistance with for home to school transport on discretionary grounds.

Over 16 in college

If the young person is aged 16-19 and has special educational needs and disabilities and requires assistance with transport to college, please use the online home to college post 16 form

How you can help us

  • punctuality – usually a vehicle transports a number of pupils. To maintain the timetable, it is important that your child is ready to join the transport as soon as it arrives. School transport cannot wait for your child for more than a few minutes.
  • arriving home – you should make suitable arrangements for your child when they return home. All primary school pupils must be met from the transport by an authorised person.
  • absence – please let the passenger assistant know of any problem that may affect your child’s journey to school. If your child will not be attending school for a few days, please inform the transport provider or passenger assistant as soon as possible so that the vehicle does not make unnecessary journeys to your home.
  • moving house – if you move house, let the school transport team and the statutory assessment team know as soon as possible. Passenger assistants will not collect pupils from new addresses without authorisation from school transport officers.
  • child seats, harnesses and seat belts – these are provided on all school transport, except public service buses and trains, and should be worn at all times. We provide suitable child seats and booster seats as necessary. A harness may be used if a child seat is not appropriate or possible.
  • wheelchairs – pupils may only travel in wheelchairs or buggies which are suitable for transportation. School transport does not provide these, so parents must supply details of type, size and make before transport can be arranged.

Unacceptable behaviour

Where a child is unable to travel safely to school, including where the pupil’s behaviour is such that it may threaten the safety of the pupils, driver and passenger assistants, the council reserves the right to suspend or withdraw transport support. Parents and guardians should make sure their child knows how to behave while travelling to school. Examples of unacceptable behaviour are:

  • refusing to wear the seat belt provided
  • using foul or inappropriate language
  • aggressive behaviour towards others
  • causing damage to the vehicle

Concessionary fares for post 16 learners

Colleges can provide details of concessionary fares available to students. There is more information in Post 16 Learners Statement and from your child’s college.