Hampshire County Council is seeking residents’ and stakeholders’ views on its proposed Post-16 Transport Policy for 2023/24.
The policy outlines the provision of transport services for young people over the age of 16 who are accessing education or training. While there is no statutory obligation for the County Council to provide transport after the age of 16, a service is offered to students with special needs or disabilities who require additional support to access settings that are suitable for their needs. As with most Local Authorities, this is a discretionary service that requires a partial contribution from parents.
The County Council is required each year to prepare a Post-16 Transport Policy statement and to carry out a consultation. As part of this year’s consultation, the County Council is proposing to increase the parental contribution by 27.1%, in line with the increased costs of running the service.
The costs for Post-16 Transport are increasing significantly – by 27.1% per year. This is being driven by national driver shortages, a limited number of transport operators on the market, and an increase in fuel prices.
The proposed change to this year’s Post-16 Transport Policy is to increase the partial parental contribution to the service in line with these higher running costs. This is the only proposed change to the policy. Under the proposed change, parents would continue to pay the same proportion of the total transport costs as they have previously.
As in previous years, families in receipt of income-based free school meals and certain means-tested benefits will not be required to pay an annual charge.
There is an opportunity to apply for a discretionary waiver or reduction in charge in exceptional circumstances, or where the charge would result in a family’s annual income being reduced to around £16,190.
Submit your feedback
The County Council is keen to hear from as many residents and stakeholders as possible. The consultation will run for a period of six weeks from Monday 20 February until 11:59 pm on Sunday 2 April.
For full details of the proposed change to the policy, and how to submit your feedback, please visit the Hampshire County Council website.
Comments can also be submitted in writing to School Transport Team, QEII North, Winchester, SO23 8UG
To request a paper copy of the 2022/23 Post-16 Transport Policy, for a copy in another language or format, or for any other queries about the consultation, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01962 846925.
Analysis of the consultation feedback will be presented, alongside recommendations for the 2023/24 Post-16 Transport Policy, to the County Council’s Executive Lead Member for Children’s Services at a Decision Day later this year.