We are seeking your views on our Post 16 Transport policy. The Department for Education requires us to consult each year, regardless of any changes, to ensure the policy provides a full picture of the available transport and support.

While we understand that the ongoing uncertainty around COVID-19 means that it is difficult to plan for the future, it is important that we still ensure that sufficient transport provision is available for those families and learners who need it.

While current government guidance on transport advises that journeys be kept to a minimum, it does acknowledge that alternative options will not be available for all travellers and so ensures that remaining transport options are as safe as possible.

As the current year’s policy did not limit KCC’s ability to make these necessary adjustments, we are proposing no significant changes for the 2021/22 academic year. We will of course continue to monitor how the pandemic develops, alongside any changes in government guidance, and advise all users if any adjustments are needed in the future.

There is a legal requirement for learners to stay in education, training or work until they reach 18 years of age, and as young adults there is an expectation they will contribute to the cost of their travel in most circumstances. Whilst KCC is not directly funded to support any transport requirements for learners over the age of 16, KCC has made significant financial commitments to Post 16 Transport. For most students, KCC's 16+ Travel Saver Card (provided at a subsidised rate of £400 a year, subject to change) offers the most cost-effective way to get to school/college. 

The Local Authority commits in excess of £5 million on Post 16 Transport and draws an income of less than £2 million. Numbers fluctuate from year to year, but the total subsidy remains in excess of £3 million per annum. On average, KCC subsidises just under 70% of the overall cost of Post 16 Transport to ensure learners can access their schools and colleges.

Your views are therefore important to us and will help KCC Members in making policy decisions about how best to use such funding.

In 2019, we implemented the option to allow the 16+ Travel Saver to be bought via an instalment method, to help spread the cost of the pass throughout the year. The year before that we reduced the cost of access to hired transport (where public buses are not operating) through the Vacant Seat Payment Scheme (VSPS) to £400 per year from an original cost of £490.

Responses to the consultation will be analysed and considered before a final version of the policy is published at the end of May 2021.

The proposed policy for the 2021/22 academic year can be seen below in the 'Consultation Documents' section.

This consultation is open to anyone who wishes to take part, as an individual or on behalf of an organisation. Please see the information in the 'Consultation Documents' section below. You may also wish to visit the KCC 16+ Travel Saver webpage for more information about the current benefits.

Alternative formats: If you require any of the consultation material in an alternative format or language please email alternativeformats@kent.gov.uk or call 03000 42 15 53 (text relay service number: 18001 03000 42 15 53). This number goes to an answering machine, which is monitored during office hours.

Privacy: KCC collects and processes personal information in order to provide a range of public services. KCC respects the privacy of individuals and endeavours to ensure personal information is collected fairly, lawfully, and in compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation and the Data Protection Act 2018. Read the full Privacy Notice.

Timeline

  • Opened
    25 Jan 2021 at 11:00
  • Closes
    5 Mar 2021 at 17:00

Consultation Documents

Respond

Details

Consulting Organisation Type
  • Kent County Council
Consulting Organisation Name Kent County Council
District / Borough areas affected by the consultation
  • Ashford
  • Canterbury
  • Dartford
  • Dover
  • Gravesham
  • Maidstone
  • Sevenoaks
  • Folkestone and Hythe
  • Swale
  • Thanet
  • Tonbridge & Malling
  • Tunbridge Wells
Consultation Topic
  • General interest
  • Children and families
  • Schools, education and learning
Consultation Methods
  • Online survey / questionnaire / forms
  • Other survey / questionnaire / forms
  • Open responses (e.g. letters and email)
Contact Details

Transport Consultation
Room M4.26
Kent County Council
Sessions House
Maidstone
ME14 1XQ

Email: post16transport@kent.gov.uk