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Special Education Needs Transport

Parent Guidelines

To view our full home to school transport policy, please visit our home to school transport page

The object of this page is to explain to parents/carers who receive free school transport in the form of a taxi or minibus, just what the service is about and how it operates.

Eligibility for Home to School Transport

Pupils who have Statements of SEN and who attend a mainstream school may receive free transport if they fulfil the criteria described in 'Admission to Secondary Schools'

Pupils who have Statements of SEN who attend special schools or resourced schools will not automatically receive free transport. They may, however, receive free transport to school if, in addition to having a Statement of SEN, they fulfil one or more of the criteria in Section 3 of the Transport Policy or if the council considers that their circumstances are exceptional and that transport provision should be made because of these exceptional circumstances.

Collection/Drop-off Procedure

When transport is initially set up for your child we will write to you giving you the following details:

  1. Escorts name.
  2. Name and address of Taxi Company
  3. Telephone number.

All escorts and drivers must display their identity badges whilst transporting your child as part of the authority's vetting procedure. Should you have any concerns about non-compliance please do not hesitate to contact us at the number listed at the end of these guidelines.

The taxi will come to your home address/or designated pick up point, to collect your child in the morning and will wait for you to bring your child to the vehicle. This also applies for the return journey from school when you will need to be available to collect your child from the vehicle.

Escort Involvement

If your child has been assigned an escort, he/she is there to ensure that all doors are closed properly and that seat belts and harnesses are used where available.

They are employed to ensure that the children travel in safety at all times and this also means that the drivers can concentrate on the driving of the vehicle and are not distracted in any way. They are not employed to take your child to his/her doorstep; this is your responsibility.

The escort will take your child to School and hand him/her over to a member of staff in the morning and collect him/her again in the evening. They will also try to make sure that your child leaves the transport at all times with their belongings.

Driver Involvement

The driver of your child's transport is employed to drive the vehicle only. It is his/her responsibility to ensure that your child arrives at school on time in the morning and that he/she is picked up promptly in the afternoon.

Involvement of the Services for Children and Young People Special Needs Service Unit

All the Special Education Needs transport arrangements throughout Tameside, for all the children, are organised through the Services for Children and Young People Special Needs Services Unit. The Unit is responsible for all escorts and drivers and their aim is to ensure that all pupils are delivered to school safely and on time where possible. Please contact us using the contact details below if necessary.

What if the transport does not arrive?

Before you follow the steps outlined below please allow for the fact that there may be heavy traffic in the area through which the driver has to travel.

  1. The first step is to telephone your transport company to find out if the vehicle is late or has broken down etc. They will usually be able to give you an idea of how long the transport will be.
  2. If you get no satisfaction from the company please telephone the Special Needs Services Unit, telephone numbers provided and we will try to sort out the problem as soon as possible.

What if your child is ill?

If your child is taken ill please inform your taxi company to save them making wasted journeys where possible. You must also inform them when your child is fit enough to return to school, otherwise they will not call for him/her.

Changes to your address

Any changes of address must be given in writing to the Services for Children and Young People Special Needs Services Unit 5 working days notice must be given to allow for the changes to be made. Escorts and Drivers will not accept changes of address. This must be done through the Special Needs Services Unit in all instances.

Click here for a change of address/emergency sheet Adobe Acrobat Format  this needs to be returned to Special Educational Needs Service Unit.

What happens in an emergency?

If you are unable to be at home to collect your child from the transport due to an emergency, please ensure that you make alternative arrangements with the Services for Children and Young People, Special Needs Services Unit as soon as possible.

Sometimes parents are not at home to collect their children and leave no alternative address. The only solution for us is to take their child to Social Care and Health or the Police Station. When this happens transport will be cancelled until parents ensure they will be at home in future.

For safety reasons we never leave children with anybody unless the parents have instructed us, in writing, to do so.

How long will the transport wait?

The drivers will wait between 3 minutes only for each child to be brought out to the vehicle. Transport is organised on a time basis and unlimited waiting time would mean that the children would be late into school. Please ensure that your child is ready on time.

Behaviour Contracts

Tameside operates a behavioural contract and/or withdrawal of transport arrangements in the event of behavioural problems arising. Pupils are expected to behave in an acceptable manner whilst travelling on Council arranged transport. If a pupil's behaviour gives persistent cause for concern (i.e. threatens the health and safety of themselves, other pupils, the driver or escort) and all attempts to modify such behaviour have been resisted, arrangements for travelling on Council transport will be subject to a written agreement with parent(s)/carer(s). A sample of the Councils agreement is available on request. The Council reserves the right to withdraw arranged transport, including escort provision, if the behaviour of the pupil jeopardises the safety of the vehicle occupants. In such circumstances a free bus pass will be issued and parent(s)/carer(s) will be expected to ensure attendance at school.

Any other problems

Contact Information
Contact by Post

Special Educational Needs
Inclusion Team
Shirley House
Oldham Street
Hyde
Tameside
SK14 1LJ
Contact by Telephone
0161 342 3205 / 3691