School and College Transport Assistance

Please read the following carefully before making any application, and read the Low Income Criteria download at the bottom of the page to see if you qualify as a Low Income Household.

For FAQ's please download the Frequently Asked Questions pdf.

Primary and Secondary Schools

You qualify for travel assistance to primary or secondary school if your home address is in the Borough of Southend and one of the following applies to you:

  • You are a primary school student, you applied to your nearest school for a place and we were not able to provide a school place within two walking miles of your home address.
  • You are a secondary school student, you applied to your nearest school for a place and we were not able to provide a school place within three walking miles of your home address.
  • You are a secondary school student, are registered for Free School Meals or live in a Low Income Household and you attend a selective school in Southend which is between two and six walking miles from your home address.
  • You are a secondary school student, are registered for Free School Meals or live in a Low Income Household, you attend a school which is between two and six walking miles of your home address and which is one of the three closest appropriate secondary schools.
  • You are a primary or secondary school student, attend the nearest Denominational (Faith) school on the grounds of religious belief within two to fifteen walking miles of your home address with vacancies in the appropriate year group and you are registered for Free School Meals or live in a Low Income Household.
  • You are a secondary school student studying GCSEs, move home during year 10 or 11 and your existing school is at least three walking miles from your new home address.

Sixth Forms and Colleges

You qualify for travel assistance to a publicly funded sixth form or college in the Southend, Rochford and Castle Point areas if all of the following six points apply to you:

  1. You meet the criteria for Free School Meals or you live in a Low Income Household or you have a Statement of Special Educational Needs or you have an Education, Health and Care Plan or you have a Learning Difficulty Assessment (and these do not exclude transport).
  2. Your home address is in the Borough of Southend.
  3. Your home address is over three walking miles from the sixth form or college.
  4. You are under 19 years old on 1st September 2017 (or were under 19 years old on 1st September 2016 if you are commencing the second year of a course).
  5. You are on a full-time course (a minimum of 450 hours of guided learning spread evenly over 36 weeks of the academic year).
  6. You attend the nearest publicly-funded sixth form or college offering the course to be studied. If you study a multi-subject course such as A levels you must attend the nearest sixth form or college offering 50% or more of those subjects.

You qualify for travel assistance to a publicly funded sixth form or college outside the Southend, Rochford and Castle Point areas if either:

  • Points 1 to 6 above for places within Southend/Rochford/Castle Point apply to you or
  • Points 2 to 6 above apply to you and your parent/carer makes a contribution of £560 (or the equivalent of an adult annual Octopus pass for Southend, whichever is the greater) towards the cost of transport by 31st March 2018.

How to apply

Please read the Primary and Secondary School Transport Guidance Notes 2017-18 or Post 16 College and Sixth Form Transport Guidance Notes 2017-18 before completing the relevant online application.

  • Fill in the relevant online form found on this page. For Denominational (Faith) Schools, you will then be provided with a denominational signature form, which your celebrant will be required to complete.
  • Online applications can take up to ten working days to process, but during July to September may take longer. For transport assistance to be issued by 1st September an application should be submitted by 21st July. Incomplete applications cannot be processed
  • Decisions are advised by email - please ensure you provide an accurate email address and remember to check your junk/spam box for a decision also. 

If approved for travel assistance on a public bus, this may be either in the form of a pass that the transport provider will issue directly to you, or a direct payment to you from Southend Council equivalent to the cost of the relevant pass.

Upon confirmation that your child is eligible, we will email you with the following information:

  • which pass has been agreed and how it will be issued to you
  • if the award is to be a direct payment, the amount of the cost of the annual pass (or the cost of relevant tickets if less than a year) and information about where the pass can be purchased from

For direct payments, we will also attach a form that should be completed with your nominated bank account details and returned to us. This will enable payment to be made to you for purchase of the relevant bus pass.

Please note that if it is deemed a rail pass is to be issued we will provide this and details will be given in a confirmation email.

Children and young people with an Education, Health and Care Plan or a Statement of Special Educational Needs should contact their SEN Case Officer to discuss their transport needs or request a Getting To School form.

Page last updated: 27/07/2017