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In 2018 Bury2Gether Parent/Carer forum undertook a survey with their members about the SEN Travel Assistance service, the feedback was used to inform operational changes to improve the service for children and young people and their parents/carers.
The consultation which was published in January 2019 was done to gather feedback for the following reasons:
· To gather feedback on operational service improvements which were implemented in Autumn 2018 and the quality of the transport and escorts
· To inform the specification for the new contracts which are being tendered in 2019
· For use in further service development and to promote flexibility and choice of all SEN travel assistance options available
The operational changes have made a difference and the quality of the service has improved with the implementation of:
· Zero cancellation policy
· School and College TransportTeam are available Monday to Friday from 7:30am to 4:45pm
· Consistent arrangements in place with vehicles and escorts
The new contracts will continue to improve the quality of the service with a wider range of providers and monitoring of their performance.
Awareness of alternative travel options to increase choice, flexibility and independence is mixed.
Of the parent/carers who responded:
· 93% find the escort polite and understanding of their child/young person’s needs
· 63% have noticed an improvement in the service
· 97.6% told us their vehicle generally arrives within 5 minutes of the pick up / drop off time
· 16.3% would consider an alternative option to reduce the travel time for their child/young person
· 4.8% would be interested in promoting independence for their older young person with the use of vehicle meeting points in safe designated meeting points
· 19% told us that either they or a family member would be interested in acting as a volunteer pupil escort
· 66.7% are aware of travel training, 85.1% are aware of mileage reimbursement, 51.1% are aware of personal budgets, 69.6% are aware of travel passes and 95.7% are aware of transport
What we are going to do...
We will continue to work with all providers to ensure that transport is of good quality, with focus on safety and consistency of staff on the vehicles. The zero cancellation is working and we will continue with our efforts on this.
We will continue to work with Bury2Gether and we will have SEN School and College transport team representation at events during the year so parent/carers can feedback directly and we can let people know about the alternative options available.