Midlothian Council’s current policy is to pay the travel expenses of those pupils attending the District School who live more that two miles from that school. The policy is stated below:
Bus passes are issued where public transport exists. Contract transport is arranged where there is no suitable public transport. Where there are vacant seats on contract buses, these may be made available to pupils who are attending the district school and who are not normally entitled to free transport; however a charge may be made for this service.
Where appropriate, free travel is provided for pupils receiving special education. Consideration may also be given to requests for assistance with travel in exceptional circumstances eg: where the road between home and school is deemed by the Authority to be unsafe, and where there is no public transport available*. At this time, pupils living in the Newbattle Abbey estate are entitled to free bus passes.
Transport costs are also met in the case of any pupil whom the Authority requires to attend a school other than the district school, if the pupil meets the distance qualification.
Parents who choose to send their children to other than the district school will not receive assistance in relation to travel to and from school.
Vehicle access to school grounds is limited and the Parent Council, staff, PTA, JRSOs and pupils monitor and revisit pupil travel to school on a regular basis.
The authority advises that responsibility for the safety of the children on their way to and from school is legally a parental matter. Please obey traffic regulations in place in the vicinity of the school. They are here for the safety of all the children.
Walking or Cycling to School
Parents, pupils and staff who walk or cycle all or part of the journey to school are more healthy.
Initiatives and measures to encourage walking and cycling to school include;
- Road safety measures such as pedestrian crossings, traffic islands, 20mph zones, and traffic calming.
- Walking and cycling facilities including footways, cycleways, cycle parking, routes to school maps, and footprints painted on footways.
- Park and Stride – identified parking away from the school with safe walking routes to school.
- Walk to School Week – education and participation in walking campaigns with incentives throughout the year.
- The Big Pedal – education and participation in cycling to school.
- Cycle training – Active School Co-ordinators train parents and helpers to provide cycling courses to pupils.
- Park Smart – leaflets to parents highlighting better places to park, education to children, and enforcement of parking zones outside schools.
- Walking Bus where parents escort a number of children to school along a specifies route. High visibility clothing is provided and routes are assessed.
- Consultation with parents such as the school travel plan surveys and attending school events and parent council meetings.
- Kerbcraft – education and participation in learning how to cross the road safely.