School transport for September 2019

All temporary travel passes have been renewed to run until your child’s permanent pass is received. Permanent passes will be received between November and December. Students should collect their new temporary travel passes from school by Wednesday 18 September.

You can check your child's bus stop, route and timetable online. For information about the introduction of replacement temporary bus passes, school transport contracts renewals and arrangements for the issue of permanent bus passes, please read the latest school transport update.

Behaviour Protocol Integrated Transport Services

Introduction

The Council’s Integrated Transport Services acknowledges that in limited, specific circumstances, a pupil / student may be suspended / withdrawn from home to school transport where behaviour is unacceptable.  The Integrated Transport Services operates in line with the national statutory Home to School Travel and Transport Guidance, the local policy and guidance framework, and the contract set by the County Council. The Terms and Conditions of Travel, also available within the Home to School Transport Policy and Guidance document, (both of which are available on the school transport policies webpage) clearly state that pupils / students must behave well on home to school transport services.

This protocol aims to clearly set out the principles and decision making process of the Integrated Transport Services when dealing with instances of poor behaviour.

Protocol

Principles

 

  • Where a pupil’s / student’s behaviour is unacceptable, they may be suspended / withdrawn from home to school transport, but this will be a matter of last resort.
  • If they are suspended / withdrawn from home to school transport, it remains the parents’ / carers’ responsibility to ensure their child gets to school.
  • Health & safety is taken extremely seriously and must not be compromised.
  • Any response will appropriately take into account the personal circumstances of the pupil / student and their mental capacity.
  • If parents / carers put children or young people at risk, as a result of their behaviour, this may be a factor in determining whether or how their child can be transported.
  • Schools, parents / carers and pupils / students will be made aware of the Behaviour Protocol, which will be published and available on the Buckinghamshire County Council School Transport Policies website.
  • Transport operators reserve the right to report the incident to relevant authorities, and / or seek financial compensation from the parent / carer for any serious damage to the vehicle by the pupil / student. Payment does not give immediate right to commence travelling again on the transport.

Definition of "Unacceptable Behaviour".

Behaviour which is likely to significantly offend or endanger others, including, but not limited to:

  • Serious damage to the vehicle by the pupil / student
  • Actions which may constitute a health and safety risk
  • Assaults on others
  • Verbal abuse of other people including swearing, taunting, racist, sexist, homophobic comments, threatening behaviour
  • Incitement of others to engage in misbehaviour
  • Making repeated malicious false allegations of mistreatment requiring investigation
  • Serious misuse of a bus pass
  • Failure to comply with the reasonable instructions of the driver, passenger assistant, member of the Integrated Transport Service staff, authorised member of school / establishment staff.

Process

Decision-Making

  • Decision to suspend / withdraw a pupil / student from home to school transport due to unacceptable behaviour is made by the Integrated Transport Services – Safeguarding, Compliance & HSEQ Manager who must consult with the school and the relevant BCC Service Area Manager(s).
  • In the absence of the Safeguarding, Compliance & HSEQ Manager, decision is made by the Head of Integrated Transport Services consulting as above.
  • In the absence of either person, a decision may be made by one of the Leadership Team within Integrated Transport Services, consulting and informing all other relevant parties as above.
  • In the absence of the relevant BCC Service Area Manager(s), a senior officer in that Service Area must be consulted.

The Decision

The relevant officers noted above can determine:

  • Upon notification to the Integrated Transport Services of the incident of unacceptable behaviour, an initial investigation will take place (discussion with operator / school / parents, as necessary). The following actions may then be taken:
  • A written warning is sent to the parents / carers and copied to the school for information
    • Where misbehaviour continues, a 5 day suspension from home to school transport may be implemented
      • Where misbehaviour still continues a 10 day suspension from home to school transport may be implemented
    • The child / student may be withdrawn permanently from home to school transport
    • Temporary suspension from home to school transport pending further investigation
    • Continue on home to school transport pending further investigation
    • Immediate suspension / withdrawal from home to school transport

Where further investigation is being carried out this will be:

  • Explained in writing to the parent / carer and school
  • Completed in as prompt a time-scale as possible, proportionate to the circumstances

The relevant officers will determine who should best investigate the matter.

The Period of suspension / withdrawal from home to school transport

The relevant officers will determine, in accordance with the decision process above, the period of suspension / withdrawal from home to school transport, but it should be proportionate to the incident[s] and consistent with the principles of the protocol.

Return to Transport

During the period of suspension / withdrawal, steps will be taken to address the problem behaviour. This may include work required at school or at home e.g. working through a booklet about behaviour issues to raise awareness of the risks and consequences of inappropriate behaviour. Return to transport may be conditional on the completion of such work, as agreed by the relevant officers. The parent / carer, pupil / student (where reasonable) and school will be consulted on arrangements for return to transport.

Appeals and Complaints

An initial appeal may be made to the Safeguarding, Compliance & HSEQ Manager who will refer it to a senior Council officer who has had no previous involvement with the case. They will review the case promptly, but if the withdrawal from transport stands, any further appeals or concerns from the parent / carer will need to go through the Council’s formal feedback and complaints procedure.

Communication

Parents / carers will receive written notification and explanation of any decision to suspend or withdraw their child from transport. This will include details of the period of suspension / withdrawal from transport, return to transport procedure, options for appeal or feedback and complaints. This will also be copied to the school.

Updates / Review of protocol

This Behaviour Protocol will be reviewed regularly and as necessary, and also following any changes to Council / Service Area structures. Updated versions will be published on the school transport website, whereby the online version will represent the most up to date and current version.

 

Last updated: 28 August 2019

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