Agenda item

Grammar School Transport - 2018 Review

(To receive a report by David Robinson, Commissioning Manager Transport, which requests the Committee to consider the 2018 review)


The Chairman welcomed to the meeting David Robinson, Commissioning Manager, Transport and Teri Marshall, Senior Commissioning Officer, Transport Commissioning Team.


The report provided the Committee with the outcomes of the Grammar School Transport 2018 Review.


Attached for the Committee's information was:


·            Appendix A – A copy of the Children and Young People report on Grammar School Transport Policy 2016;

·            Appendix B – A copy of the Lincolnshire County Council Transport Policy 2018/19 booklet; and

·            Appendix C – A copy of the Designated Transport Area (DTA) map showing grammar School DTAs.


The Commissioning Manager reported that the transport entitlement policy for grammar schools had not changed since the CYPSC Review published in 2016.  It was reported further that the Lincolnshire policy offered free transport to young people living in the designated transport area for their grammar school.  It was noted that this entitlement was not subject to income; but to the statutory walking distance (3 miles for secondary school children, which would be amended, where a low income threshold and proximity to a school of choice allowed a statutory entitlement). 


Table 1 on page 68 of the report provided the Committee with details of the number of pupils receiving transport to Lincolnshire grammar schools with costs as at September 2018.  It was noted that in comparison to 2016, the figures shown in Table 1 had revealed an increase in the total annual costs of £59,899.85 with 170 less pupil being transported.  The Committee was advised that this was not as a result of reducing numbers, but because parents and schools were making alternative arrangements in some cases.


It was highlighted that the Council's policy was more generous than that offered by any other local authorities that provided transport to grammar schools; and that the cost of providing the service was budgeted for was in line with costs for other mainstream transport provision.


It was highlighted further that there had been no change in national statutory requirements in respect of grammar school transport; and that the Council provided transport irrespective of income; and that the Council would be able to meet any new criteria if introduced; and that the Council would benefit from any funding available.  It was noted that the policy met the needs of young people in Lincolnshire, and that there had been no complaints against the policy.


During discussion, the Committee raised the following points:


·            One member who had contributed to the previous scrutiny review advised that there was very little call for change and that the policy was still fit for purpose, and as such a review was not needed;

·            A question was asked whether Academies helped to fund transport.  Officers advised that some Academies did make their own arrangements for transport;

·            Some concern was expressed regarding the effect on non-selective schools, of children going on to grammar schools;

·            Clarification was sort regarding the Spilsby Kind Edward VI Academy; and whether it was in fact a selection school.  Officers confirmed that it was a partially selection school and that the figure of 67 was the number of pupils being transported.  It was highlighted that some children in the Spilsby area actually travelled to Skegness; and

·            Confirmation was given that the policy did not discriminate.




1.      That the outcomes from the 2018 review be noted.


2.      That support be given to the continuation of the existing policy in relation to grammar school transport.

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