School transportation for pupils in Finnish-speaking basic education

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If a pupil in basic education lives more than tree or five kilometres away from his or her school, he or she is entitled to free transportation, known as school transportation benefit. Free transportation may also be granted if the commute is too difficult, tiring or dangerous in view of the pupil’s circumstances, such as medical reasons.

School transportation benefit is only available if the pupil attends a school assigned by the City of Espoo. Pupils attending a secondary school (instead of the school assigned to them), bilingual education, English-speaking education, language immersion education or Montessori education are not entitled to school transportation benefit. However, they may be granted temporary free transportation after an accident at school for which they have a medical certificate. It is only possible to apply for free transportation to and from one home address, namely the address recorded for the pupil in the Population Information System.

When is school transportation benefit granted?

1) Length of travel to school

A free public transportation travel card is granted to:

  • pupils in grades 1–2 if their travel to school exceeds 3 km
  • pupils in grades 3–10 if their travel to school exceeds 5 km

The City of Espoo measures the distance along the shortest pedestrian route where traffic does not present a danger.

2) Difficult, tiring or dangerous travel to school

If the reason for applying for school transportation benefit is a difficult, tiring or dangerous commute, the pupil usually gets a travel card.

Alternatively, the pupil may be granted transportation by taxi if the pupil has a specialist’s statement on his or her ability to walk or take public transportation to school. The following statements are accepted:

  • a statement from a physician or a psychologist
  • a statement from the school’s learning support group
  • a pedagogical statement

The Public Works Department of the City of Espoo will separately assess how dangerous each new school commute is. A route to school is not considered dangerous if it is equipped with separate light traffic routes or a wide hard shoulder, traffic lights or marked pedestrian crossings, and it has a speed limit of 50 km/h at maximum and sufficient visibility throughout the way.

3) Medical reasons

The City may grant school transportation benefit on medical reasons if the pupil has a statement from a physician or a psychologist. The statement must comment on the pupil’s ability to walk or take public transportation to school.

In case of an emergency

A pupil who has been in an accident may be granted a temporary travel card or transportation by taxi. The pupil’s guardian must send a medical certificate to the school. The certificate must explain the reason and the time for which the pupil needs transportation to school.

How to apply for school transportation benefit?

Please use the following forms to apply for school transportation benefit:

If you apply for a travel card for a pupil whose commute is shorter than three kilometres, or if you apply for transportation by taxi, please attach one of the following documents to your application:

  • a statement from a physician or a psychologist
  • a statement from the school’s learning support group
  • a pedagogical statement

If you apply for a travel card, send or bring the application to your child’s school.
If you apply for transportation by taxi, send the application to the following address:

SITO/School transportation
P.O. Box 31
02070 CITY OF ESPOO

The application cannot be sent by email.

Application periods for transportation by taxi

Taxi rides begin at the start of the school year if the application was made in time.

Application periods for the school year 2019–2020:

  • The application period for pupils who need long-term transportation by taxi ended on 15 March 2019.
  • The application period for pupils whose taxi rides will continue ended on 15 March 2019
  • The application period for new pupils and pupils who change schools ended on 10 May 2019.
  • The application period for pupils in voluntary additional basic education (10th grade) ended on 6 August 2019. 

You can apply for transportation by taxi at any time during the school year. The taxi rides will only begin after transportation by taxi has been granted to the pupil.

How can I get a decision on transportation by taxi?

The decision on transportation by taxi will appear in Wilma. If the pupil’s guardian wishes to receive the decision by post, it will be sent to the pupil’s home address.

Travel cards are granted by school principals. Decisions on transportation by taxi are made by the Superintendent of Schools in your area.

What if my child moves or changes schools?

If the pupil’s home address or school changes, you need to re-apply for school transportation benefit.

Further information

Client service
09 816 24000
koulukuljetukset@espoo.fi