Hampshire County Council raises transport prices for post-16 pupils with additional needs
TRANSPORT provided by Hampshire County Council for college students with additional needs will be made more expensive and will not cater to individual timetables.
The post-16 transport service aims to ensure young people with special educational needs or disabilities (SEND) are still able to get to their lessons every day, writes David George of the Local Democracy Reporting Service.
But now the annual fee paid by parents will be increased by 2.7%, which HCC says is in line with inflation.
It means parents will pay £616 per year to take their child less than five miles to college.
But if they need to travel more than 10 miles, it will cost them £1,365 a year.
Transport will also not be arranged around individual student timetables, instead making one journey to and from school or college each day.
Martin Goff, HCC head of transport and admissions, said: "This service is part of the home-to-school transport service and supports young people in their journeys to schools, sixth forms and colleges around Hampshire.
"We proposed very few changes – one was in favour of students in reducing walks to a possible pick-up point and another is the inflationary rise to the charge."
Currently, HCC spends £1.3m annually on post-16 transport, as part of its £34m home-to-school transport service.
There were six responses to a consultation at the start of this year – which all pleaded for increased public bus services at the start and end of the school day.
The changes were signed off by HCC's cabinet member for children’s services, Cllr Roz Chadd.