New Bus Service from September 2016
14th July 2016
In light of recent cuts to public transport and an increase in fares, we have been working closely with local provider, Centrebus/High Peak Buses to introduce a new bus service to serve the school.
The new service number ‘68’ will operate during school term time only and run through from Glossop to St Thomas More School & St Anne’s and return at the end of the school day. The leaflet provided contains all of the details.
The fares are considered to be highly competitive as in comparison, an annual rail ticket from New Mills would currently cost £868.00 for an under 16 year old as opposed to the Centrebus fare with a valid b-line of £577.85.
In order to access further information relating to this service please visit www.centrebusshop.co.uk – Home to Study – Buxton Schools. Tickets and passes can also be purchased on line.
We trust that this will provide a safe, efficient and more affordable travel option for the pupils.
(Centrebus apologises for the school name spelling error on the leaflets)
Updated January 2016
ST THOMAS MORE CATHOLIC SCHOOL
What is the County Council’s home to school transport policy?
The County Council provides assistance with transport for secondary age school pupils to the end of statutory school age who do not live within walking distance of their normal area school. This distance as defined in the Education Act 1996 is three miles and is measured by the shortest available route. The full policy is available from the following link www.derbyshire.gov.uk/get2school
What about transport to faith schools?
The Authority agreed changes to the transport policy for faith schools in 2014 following a public consultation process.
From September 2015, only secondary age students in year 11 who are baptised Roman Catholic, and who live more than three miles from school, are entitled to receive a bus or rail pass for their journey to school. These students automatically received a new pass and only need to contact the County Council if their circumstances change. There is a charge for each pass issued and this is £360.00 for the full school year. The County Council will continue to offer a range of payment options, including direct debits.
Students who wish to travel by bus will have to apply for a non-priority bus pass. The charge for this is £360.00 per pass per school year and are issued on a first come, first served basis.
Families should be aware that subsidised rail passes from the County Council are not available to students in years 7 to 10 and tickets will have to be purchased directly from Northern Rail. As this is likely to be more expensive, it is recommended that parents look at the range of ticketing options available.
From September 2016, the County Council will no longer provide financial support for school bus services to faith schools. However, the County Council will be working closely with bus and coach operators to see if services can be provided commercially, or in different ways. The school will be kept informed of developments and updates will be shared with the school community.
The train line from Manchester to Buxton will be unaffected and services will continue to operate.
How do I apply for a pass for my journey to school?
All parents who need to apply for a pass from September 2015 – including those who have children in year 7 – should have been issued with a form to apply for a non-priority bus pass. However, if you need a form, please contact the School Transport Team on 01629 536740.
When, and how, will I have to pay for my pass?
Families who receive a pass will be issued with a payment preference form, and a direct debit mandate in August. This will need to be completed and returned to the County Council. A range of payment options will be available – this includes the option to spread the cost over the academic year so parents do not have to pay the full amount in one go.
What if I am in receipt of benefits?
The County Council will continue to have an on-going duty to provide free school transport for students aged 11-16 who are entitled to receive free school meals, or whose families get the maximum level of working tax credits, to any one of three nearest suitable schools where the distance is between two and six miles. Where the school is preferred on grounds of religion or belief, the distance is between 2 and 15 miles and the school is the nearest appropriate school.
Each year, the County Council will check whether parents are still eligible for transport assistance. If parents are no longer eligible, for example because they no longer receive relevant benefits, parents may have to meet their child's transport costs.
Will any other funding be available for transport?
The County Council will give a grant to a hardship fund which is to be administered by the relevant Diocesan authorities. These grants are intended to be used in support of families and pupils particularly disadvantaged by the changes. In particular, those identified as especially vulnerable, which includes pupils living some distance from others travelling to the school and without an alternative means of transport, and families with an income just above the threshold for entitlement to free transport on the grounds of low income for whom the costs may be prohibitive. Applications will be dealt with by the relevant diocesan authority directly.
What transport options are available to St Thomas More Catholic School?
Most students travel to school by train or currently on the High Peak Buses service 189. These are public services and if parents do not want to purchase a pass from the County Council, they can consider purchasing a pass themselves from the relevant transport operator. This is likely to be more expensive but may better suit occasional travellers. Website links for local operators are below.
Who can I contact to discuss transport issues?
If you would like to discuss the County Council’s policy regarding school transport, or you would like to apply for a free pass, you should contact the School Admissions and Transport Team, Derbyshire County Council, 3rd Floor, Council House, Saltergate, Chesterfield, S40 1LF (Telephone 01629 537479).
If you would like to talk to somebody about transport arrangements, you can contact the School Transport Team at County Hall, Matlock (Telephone 01629 536740 or 01629 536749).