Free school transport is awarded to pupils who meet the distance entitlement criteria.
Most entitled pupils will be given a season ticket for bus travel. However, a minibus or taxi may be used depending on where you live. Children who are not entitled to free school transport can travel on most school bus services after paying the appropriate fare.
- What are the criteria for free school transport?
- I receive benefits/tax credits. Does my child qualify for free school transport?
- My child attends school as a result of a placing request. Is my child entitled to free school transport?
- I have changed address in a “critical” school year. Is my child entitled to free school transport?
- How is the distance measured?
- Who is responsible for getting children to the school transport pick-up point?
- Does my child have to show their travel pass to travel?
- My child has lost his/her travel pass. Can I get a replacement?
- Can my child use the under 22 travel pass?
- What happens if a child misbehaves while on school transport?
- Will school transport run in bad weather?
- What happens if there is an accident or breakdown?
- Are school transport drivers vetted?
What are the criteria for free school transport?
Pupils who are under 8 years of age and live more than 1 mile from their catchment school or are 8 years of age or older and live more than 2 miles from their catchment school.
I receive benefits/tax credits. Does my child qualify for free school transport?
No. Free school transport is only provided to children who meet the distance criteria.
My child attends school as a result of a placing request. Is my child entitled to free school transport?
No, children attending school as a result of a placing request are not entitled to free school transport.
I have changed address in a “critical” school year. Is my child entitled to free school transport?
If you move out of the catchment area and your child is in a “critical” school year (typically S4-S6), your child may be entitled to free school transport. Please complete the online application form:
How is the distance measured?
Distances are measured using the nearest available safe walking route.
The nearest safe walking route will be the shortest route, along any footway, road or right of way, suitable for a child accompanied by an adult. From their home gateway (nearest to the school) to the nearest designated school gate.
Who is responsible for getting children to the school transport pick-up point?
Parents are responsible for getting their child to and from the school transport pick-up/set-down point. They should make their child aware of a safe route between their home and the pick-up/set-down point, and what to do in the event of the transport not arriving.
Pupils should be at the pick-up point at least 5 minutes before their transport is due.
Does my child have to show their travel pass to travel?
Yes, a valid travel pass is required to travel. Children without a valid travel pass will not be able to travel.
If a child loses their travel pass during the school day, they should contact the school office who will give them a voucher so they can travel home.
My child has lost his/her travel pass. Can I get a replacement?
If your child has lost their travel pass, you can submit a request via MyFalkirk. There is a £10 charge for a replacement travel pass.
Damaged, defaced, split or unreadable travel passes are not valid for travel.
Can my child use the under 22 travel pass?
Under 22 travel passes are valid for use on some school services.
Check your school page to find out if the under 22 travel pass can be used. You will find this information under ‘Bus timetables’.
Under 22 passes can only be used where there is sufficient excess capacity after all entitled pupils have been granted travel.
What happens if a child misbehaves while on school transport?
Many school transport vehicles are fitted with CCTV. The Transport Planning Unit, transport operators and schools work together to identify children responsible for misbehaviour, vandalism, smoking and vaping. Children who are misbehaving can be banned from school transport.
In the event of a transport ban, parents will be responsible for getting their child to and from school during the ban.
When travelling pupils must:
- Always wear a seatbelt if one is available
- Remain seated at all times when the vehicle is in motion
- Never distract the driver
- Never touch the vehicle door controls
- Never touch any emergency equipment inside the vehicle (including the emergency exit) unless an emergency occurs on the journey
- When getting off the bus, wait for the vehicle to leave before crossing the road
- Never cross in front of the bus
- Use a booster cushion if one has been provided (taxis)
Will school transport run in bad weather?
The driver will use his/her judgement about the safety of the roads in bad weather. If a morning journey is abandoned due to weather or road conditions, children will be returned to the pick-up point.
In bad weather, school transport may only run on main roads. Parents should contact the transport operator in bad weather to check if the service is operating normally.
Operators' details can be found under 'Bus timetables' on your child's school page.
What happens if there is an accident or breakdown?
Children will be instructed to stay on the vehicle until alternative transport arrives. If the situation is deemed to be dangerous, the children will be guided to a safe place by the driver.
Are school transport drivers vetted?