School transport

We have had to change the way that some of our services operate to meet the guidelines set out by the government in response to the Coronavirus pandemic.

Travel help is normally given if your child lives beyond a certain distance from school or if the walking route is unsafe. If your child has special educational needs or mobility issues and does not meet these criteria their travel needs may be individually assessed. See the SEN secondary school transport page.

A young person must meet all of the relevant criteria to qualify for free school travel.

Distances are measured along the shortest available safe walking route from the nearest entrance to your home and the nearest gate or entrance to the school using digitised mapping. For pupils attending Paignton Community and Sports Academy (PCSA), the base to measure distance for transport eligibility will be from the main Waterleat Road site. 

If you choose to send your child to a school that is not the closest suitable school to your home address, it will be your responsibility to make all of the arrangements and to cover the cost to get your child to school for the whole time your child is at the school.

  • If your child attends the nearest suitable school to your home address, free transport will be provided if the walking distance from home to school is more than 3 miles.
  • If your family is in receipt of a qualifying benefit free transport will be provided to a student in years 7-11 if the school is between 2 and 6 miles from the home address and is one of the three nearest suitable schools or if the school is between 2 and 15 miles and is the nearest faith school and is attended on faith grounds. Where a pupil is of selective ability, both grammar and comprehensive schools are deemed to be ‘suitable’ schools.

You will need to apply each year for help with school transport.


You can apply for transport assistance for your child by completing an application form and sending it us. You will be required to reapply each year for transport assistance.

Applications are normally processed within 10 working days of receiving your application. Parents will need to pay their own transport costs until the application can be processed.

Failure to include the required evidence will delay processing of your application.