School Transport

School Transport

Pupils may be able to get free transport to school, depending on how far the walk is and any special needs they have.

All children between 5 and 16 qualify for free school transport if they go to their nearest suitable school and live at least:

  • 2 miles from school if they are under 8

  • 3 miles from school if they are over 8

If there’s no safe walking route, they must be given free transport, however far from school they live. Contact your local council if you think that the walk to school isn’t safe.

DfE School Transport Guidance for Autumn 2020 (published 11 August 2020)

For further details, contact the Devon County Council School Transport service at schooltransportservicequeries-mailbox@devon.gov.uk or visit their website below.

School Streets Initiative

What are School Streets?

A School Street is a road outside a school with a temporary restriction on motorised traffic at school drop-off and pick-up times. The restriction applies to school traffic and through traffic. The result is a safer, healthier and pleasant environment for everyone.

School Street schemes offer a proactive solution for school communities to tackle air pollution, poor health and road danger reduction. A School Street scheme will encourage a healthier lifestyle and active travel to school for families and lead to a better environment for everyone.

Find out more about the scheme at www.schoolstreets.org.uk

The Bluecoat School Street initiative will commence when the school fully reopens following the current lockdown and the road will be closed to motorised traffic between 8:25am – 9:10am and 2:30pm – 3:45pm Monday to Friday during term time. We plan to run School Street until at least the Autumn term where we will then review if it should continue. Please note that this notice will apply to school traffic and that access will be given to residents where necessary, so care must continue to be taken.

Please support the school with this initiative and chose to walk, cycle and scoot from home, or if this is not possible to park a short distance away and walk, cycle or scoot the remaining distance. During the closure times motorised vehicle will be prevented from entering the road closure. We will be able to offer exemption, if approved by the school in advance, for a valid reason such as mobility considerations and for residents living within the closure. You may also find the Travel Devon free personalised travel planning support helpful - https://www.traveldevon.info/personal-travel-plans/

School Streets Frequently Asked Questions

Is this legal?

Yes. Local authorities can implement Traffic Regulation Orders (TROs) to control traffic in their area. These are legal powers and can be temporary or permanent. The Department for Transport has issued statutory guidance to all local authorities in England to help them adapt their streets quickly and cheaply to provide safe space for walking and cycling and to enable social distancing. This is part of the UK government’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Why haven’t we been consulted?

The School Streets are being implemented as emergency measures to enable social distancing and help families travel to school safely. Depending on the type of TRO, and because the UK government has relaxed TRO regulations as part of its Covid-19 response, local authorities are able to implement road closures quickly and flexibly. This does not mean consultation will not take place. Children, parents, residents and local businesses will have their say as to how the scheme might develop, what might be changed and whether it becomes permanent.

Could this create congestion on surrounding streets?

We will be working with Devon County Council to identify and promote locations away from schools where parents can park safely without obstructing residents on neighbouring streets. Any displaced traffic will be dispersed over a much wider area than at present meaning the impact on individual streets will be minimal. During previous School Streets trials in 2019, a study revealed that 58% of parents, carers and residents at 40 participating schools thought the surrounding streets were in fact less congested. This is because active travel rates (walking, scooting and cycling) during the closures increased from 59% to 66% and car trips decreased from 26% to 13%. Longer term studies of School Streets have consistently shown an overall reduction in traffic volumes in the surrounding area.

Haven’t parents and carers been told they need to drive their children to school and to avoid public transport during the Covid-19 pandemic?

This is not the case. The UK government has advised schools that they should be “encouraging parents and children and young people to walk or cycle to their education setting where possible.” Parents may be concerned about letting their children on public or school buses. So, if walking or cycling is not possible because of distance, Park & Stride locations should be used as an alternative.

Who is paying for this?

The UK government has provided local authorities with funding for short-term measures that can quickly be implemented to allow for social distancing and encourage walking and cycling. Subsequent rounds of funding will be made available where consultation reveals a desire for a more permanent scheme.