Eligibility for transport assistance to a mainstream school

Your child must meet all the criteria to be eligible for transport assistance

1. Be of compulsory school age

Compulsory school age is the term following your child's fifth birthday until the end of the school year in which they turn 16 years of age.

2. Attend the nearest catchment school

The child must be attending the nearest catchment school or a school nearer to your home than the catchment school. Where parents name the designated catchment school as one of their 3 preferences and a place is not available, assistance may be offered to the next closest school, where the other qualifying eligibility criteria are met.

3. Live the appropriate distance from home to school

The distance from home to school must be:

  • the term following the child’s fifth birthday to the day before the child’s eighth birthday: more than two miles
  • from the child’s eighth birthday until they turn 16 years of age: more than three miles

The walking distance is measured by the nearest available walking route from where the property meets the adopted road, public footpaths, bridleways, and other pathways to the nearest available entrance to the school grounds. Where all the routes to the schools in question are beyond the statutory walking distances, the route to the schools will be measured by the nearest available road route, passable for a suitable motorised vehicle, when determining whether a non-catchment school qualifies as a nearer school.

My child meets the eligibility criteria and I need help getting them to school, how do I apply for transport assistance?

If your child meets the eligibility criteria and you need help getting them to school, you can apply for transport assistance.

My child does not meet the eligibility criteria, what can I do now?

If your child does not meet the eligibility criteria, there are many travel solutions available to residents of Hampshire.

You may be able to buy a privilege seat on contracted Hampshire County Council routes. Please note that this service will incur a cost to the user.

Short-term assistance may be considered as an exception to policy if the following applies:

  • you do not meet the eligibility criteria and
  • there are no alternative solutions available to you (for example: walking, public transport or a privilege seat) and
  • you believe that you have exceptional circumstances that mean you are unable to get your child to school without Hampshire County Council support

In order for your case to be considered as an exception to policy you must first submit the appropriate application form. This application will be refused under policy. At this stage, you can contact the Transport Team by emailing school.transport@hants.gov.uk, who will advise you of the next steps.