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Post 16 Transport Statement 2020/21

Newcastle City Council Post 16 Transport Statement 2020/21

The following transport statement applies to travel in the 2020/21 academic year.

It must be noted that this Statement is currently under review by the Children Education and Skills Directorate and is subject to change.

There is no automatic entitlement to free home to school or college transport once a student is over compulsory school age. Compulsory school age ceases on the last Friday in June in the school year in which a child reaches the age of 16. This is usually at the end of Year 11. However, Newcastle City Council will provide travel assistance to eligible learners aged 16 to 25 years to their place of study to promote participation, where the council deems it necessary.

Students with Special Educational Needs Disabilities (SEND)

Some students aged 16 to 25 years with Special Educational Needs, a disability or a medical need may be eligible for travel assistance if they study full time on an approved course, if assistance is necessary for the student to attend the place of study. Support will usually be in the form of a travel permit unless exceptional circumstances apply. The local authority works in partnership with schools and colleges to promote independent travel and cost-effective travel program’s where appropriate for students over compulsory school age.

Students with special educational needs or a disability aged 16 to 25 years who attend a Further Education College have the same entitlement to travel assistance as those attending a school setting, except for the following:
 

  • Escorts may be provided to a further education establishment if a student's disability or medical condition requires this.

  • Assistance required to alight from transportation must be organised by prior arrangement with the college staff.

  • Support is only available for attendance at establishments in the Newcastle area, except in exceptional circumstances.

Applications for travel support for post-16 students with additional needs will be assessed in accordance with the criteria outlined on the Special Educational Needs Disabilities web page which can be viewed at the following link:

https://www.newcastle.gov.uk/services/schools-learning-and-childcare/special-educational-needs-andor-disabilities-send/special

COVID19 SEND Transport Guidance (pdf 510.5kb)

Financial help for home to school/college travel through a Bursary Fund

Students aged 16 to 19 years continuing their education in a mainstream setting do not usually qualify for travel assistance. The Newcastle 16 to 19 bursary  offers financial assistance for young people to continue their learning and this can help with travel costs.

In Newcastle the following secondary schools are part of the Newcastle 16 – 19 Bursary scheme which is managed by the council:

  • Benfield School

  • Excelsior Academy

  • Gosforth Academy

  • Jesmond Park Academy

  • Kenton School

  • NE Futures UTC

  • Sir Charles Parsons School

  • St Cuthbert’s Catholic High School

  • St Mary’s Catholic School

  • Studio West

  • Thomas Bewick School

  • Walbottle Campus

  • Walker Riverside Academy

You can contact your school for more information.

Who can apply for the bursary scheme?

There are two types of bursary.  You can only apply for one of these, depending on your personal circumstances.

Standard bursary

To apply for the standard bursary, you must meet all four of the following conditions:

  • attend a school in Newcastle which is part of the scheme

  • be starting Year 12, 13 or 14 in September 2020

  • be aged between 16 and 18 on 31 August 2020

  • live in a household with an annual income (including benefits and tax credits) below £27,000.00

Enhanced bursary

To apply for the enhanced bursary, you must meet all four of the following conditions:

  • attend a school in Newcastle which is part of the scheme

  • be starting Year 12, 13 or 14 in September 2020

  • be aged between 16 and 18 on 31 August 2020

and you must also belong to one of the following groups:

  • be in care

  • recently left local authority care

  • receive income support or Universal Credit because you are financially supporting yourself or financially supporting yourself and someone who is dependent on you and who you are living with, such as a child or partner

  • receive Disability Living Allowances or Personal Independence Payments in your own right, as well as Employment Support Allowance or Universal Credit in your own right

Who do I contact if I have any questions?

If you have any questions about the scheme you should speak to your school.  If they are unable to help, you can contact the council’s Schools Bursary team. Please provide your first name, surname, the school you attend and ideally any online reference number.

General information on bursary schemes is available on the Direct.Gov website.

Public transport information

A range of transport providers in Newcastle and across Tyne and Wear provide cheaper transport on the Metro, buses, ferry and local rail services between Newcastle and Sunderland for students with a valid student ID card.

Face covering exemption cards

Some people can’t wear a face mask or covering because of a disability or severe distress. At the following link https://www.civicmc.nhs.uk/files/2020/06/Face-Covering-Exemption-Cards.pdf  D.I.Y cards to help deal with public situations that might happen have been designed and are available for you to use.

The first side of the card is always the same and some people will be happy using it on its own. You can show it to quickly explain that you have a legal reasonable excuse not to wear a face mask.

If you want a non-verbal way to explain more you can double side your card with one of the extra messages. These can be printed or kept on your phone as photos.

North East Under 19 tickets

With a Stagecoach Under 19 ID card, you can buy discounted bus tickets for all Stagecoach buses in Tyne and Wear, Teesside and Hartlepool.

Once you have your card you can present it to your driver each time you buy or use an Under 19 ticket on board.

What do I need

All customers aged between 5 and 18 years old must provide proof that they are Under 19.

ID must be presented at the point of use and purchase on board.

Valid forms of ID include: passport, driving license, student ID (stating DOB), PASS card or with one of the following bus operator ID cards:

Keep an eye on the expiry date, to make sure yours is valid and you always benefit from this great saving!

Get a Stagecoach Under 19 ID card

The new Under 19 ID card is FREE each year and are valid from now until 31st August 2020 or your 19th birthday, whichever comes first. If you haven't got yours, you can  download our Under 19 application form (pdf 233.10kb)  and send it back to: Under 19 ID Card, Stagecoach, The Wheatsheaf Offices, Sunderland SR5 1AQ.

You should receive your card within a week. However, our ID card makers can become very busy at the start of the new academic year, so please allow 2 weeks in August and September.

You can also drop your application form into us at our travel shop on Stockton High Street. We will try to make up your card while you wait but, at busy times, we might ask you to leave it with us and we'll post it out to you.

Please note: you can no longer obtain a card in person at The Wheatsheaf Offices.

Stagecoach Coronavirus Update
see our Coronavirus page

Nexus - Free bus and discounted bus and Metro travel if you are disabled

If you are disabled (see below for details of which disabilities apply), live in Tyne and Wear and have a Concessionary Travel Pass, you can travel on buses for free.

Metro journeys are not free of charge but you can avoid paying full fares after 9.30am by buying a Metro Gold Card. Metro Gold Cards can only be used with a valid CT Pass. They are also valid on the Shields Ferry and rail services between Newcastle and Sunderland.

Everyone applying for the Concessionary Travel Scheme on grounds of disability has to be initially assessed by the Social Services department of their Local Authority. You should, therefore, contact them for advice on what you need to take with you. Newcastle – 0191 278 8100

If you are eligible for a Concessionary Travel Pass, you will be given a Confirmation of Eligibility form.

If you have one of the following types of disability and live in Tyne and Wear, you may be entitled to a Concessionary Travel Pass:

  • Blind or partially sighted.

  • Profoundly or severely deaf.

  • Without speech.

  • Have a disability which means that you cannot walk except with excessive labour, at an extremely slow pace or with excessive pain.

  • Do not have arms or have a long term loss of the use of both arms.

  • Have a learning disability.

  • Someone who has been, or would be, refused a driving licence on certain medical grounds

If you qualify under one of the above categories and attend college or are in paid employment for at least 15 hours a week, you can apply for an All Day Concessionary Travel Pass, which can be used at any time.

Please note that there are no discounted fares on Metro, or on Northern Rail services between Newcastle and Sunderland, for Concessionary Travel Pass holders. However, you can have unlimited travel on Metro, on Northern Rail services between Newcastle and Sunderland and also the Shields Ferry if you buy a Metro Gold Card. Pick up a leaflet for more information.

Click here for more information - for adults

Nexus - Companion Card

What is Companion Card?

A Companion Card lets you take someone with you free of charge when you travel on buses in Tyne and Wear, County Durham, Northumberland and Darlington. It’s available to residents of Tyne and Wear who receive certain allowances and need a companion to make all, or some, journeys.

So if you need to take a companion with you in order to be able to use buses, and they normally have to buy a ticket, they no longer need to – as long as they are travelling with you, and you have your Companion Card with you. If you have a Metro Gold Card, your Companion Card will be valid on Metro too.

Will I qualify for a Companion Card?

You will automatically qualify for the scheme if you receive either of the following:

  • higher rate care component of the Disability Living Allowance

  • high rate Attendance Allowance

  • the Mobility component of the War Disablement Pension (WDP)

  • Personal Independence Payment (PIP) - the decision letter must either show that:

  1. you have scored at least 8 points in either the Communicating Verbally or Planning or Following a Journey sections, or;

  2. you are in receipt of or have been awarded the enhanced rate (meaning you have scored at least 12 points) of the Mobility component of PIP

You should only apply for a Companion Card if you need a companion to make all, or some, journeys. A companion is someone who offers you significant assistance throughout the journey - this means help in boarding, moving around and getting off a vehicle. This card is not for people who can travel alone, but who need a carer in other aspects of their life. When you're travelling with a companion, they must accompany you for your entire journey to be able to use your Companion Card.

How to apply

Nexus is of course affected by the effects of the pandemic, with staff working from home, without access to all systems. This means that we're unable to process Concessionary Travel Pass applications and requests for renewals and replacements in the way that we normally do, via a paper application form.

We’ve been working on a way to deal with these requests, and are now pleased to be able to offer you online forms:

  • Apply for your first Concessionary Travel Passes - click here

  • Request the replacement or renewal of an existing Concessionary Travel Pass - click here

  • Apply for your first Companion Card - click here

Taxicard - cheaper taxi travel

The TaxiCard scheme can help people with mobility difficulties travel independently.  It allows them to travel with one of our approved taxi companies at a discounted price.  Members get issued with a card which is credited with a set amount of money every year - they use the money on their card to help pay towards each journey they make.

TaxiCard is an annual scheme, but there are two application deadlines where you can apply to join each year.

2020/21

Application deadline – Friday 28th August 2020
Scheme membership (card validity) – 28/09/2020 to 28/03/2021
 

For more information:

Phone: Nexus Customer Services Team on 0191 20 20 747 7 days a week between 7am and 9pm

Website: https://www.nexus.org.uk/bus/guide-buses/taxicard

Personal Travel Budget (PTB) for children with additional needs

Personal Travel Budgets will help you to arrange your child's home to school travel arrangements in a way that suits your personal circumstances.

A Personal Travel Budget (PTB) is provided to parents or carers of children with Special Education Needs Disability (SEND) who are eligible for travel assistance. It allows families to make flexible arrangements, monitor the quality of their child's transport directly or they could work with other families to achieve the best possible travel arrangements for their children.

What are the benefits of personal travel budgets?

  • To provides freedom and flexibility for your family to choose the most appropriate travel arrangements for your child that best fit with your personal circumstances.

  • It provides choice and control over how funding is used to get your child to and from school on time in a way that suits you, your child and your family.

  • It ensures resources are distributed in a fair way according to need.

  • It allows you to explore opportunities to share with other parents and potentially increase your buying power.

  • It offers families an alternative to the traditional services that the city council can provide.

Who can get a Personal Travel Budget?

You can get a PTB if your child is eligible for travel assistance from the city council. Additionally, when deciding to offer a PTB, we would look at your child's attendance record at school. You may be refused a PTB if your child's attendance is currently below 80% (this means 64 half day sessions or 32 full days in a school year).

For more information you can visit our web page using the following link https://www.newcastle.gov.uk/services/schools-learning-and-childcare/special-educational-needs-andor-disabilities-send/personal

Or contact the SEND Travel Support Team on 0191 2774646 between 7.30am 4.30pm, Monday to Friday. 

Or email SENDTravelsupport@newcastle.gov.uk

Disabled Parking and Blue Badge Scheme

The Blue Badge Scheme is a European wide scheme which provides a range of parking benefits for disabled people who travel either as drivers or as passengers. The badge can be used in any country in the European Union and in some other European countries as well. You can find more information on which countries you can use the badge in on the Direct.gov website.

For more information:

There is a national helpline for general enquiries for Blue Badges.  The Initial Enquiry Support Service (IESS) is a national service provided by Northgate as a point of contact for people wanting information about the Blue Badge scheme.  The service can be contacted via telephone on 0844 4630213 or via email to bluebadge@northgate-is.com.

Web page: Blue badge scheme | Disability Rights UK

Appealing a decision not to provide Transport

If you wish to appeal against a decision not to provide travel assistance to a post-16 student, please contact SEND Travel Support at:

SEND Travel Support
Newcastle City Council
Westgate Community College
West Road
Newcastle upon Tyne
NE4 9LU

You must state why you disagree with the decision and provide any additional information to support your appeal. We will review our decision in the light of any new evidence provided, this will then be communicated to the learner within 20 days.

The SEND appeals process can be viewed at the following link  SEND Transport appeal process (pdf 95kb).

Further information about SEND Travel Support is available from:
SEND Travel Support
Westgate Community College
West Road
Newcastle upon Tyne
NE4 9LU

Email: SENDTravelsupport@newcastle.gov.uk
Phone: 0191 2774646

Newcastle Local Offer

Page last updated: 29 July 2020

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