School transport to the primary school
Pupils in pre-primary and basic education are entitled to free school transport arranged by the municipality under certain conditions.
School transport is arranged for pupils in pre-primary education and grades 1–9, whose distance to their assigned primary school is longer than five kilometres. The distance is measured from the home address registered in the pupil’s information in the Population Information System to the school using the shortest public pedestrian road. The transport is primarily arranged by bus by issuing the pupils with a travel card. Transport is arranged in other ways if public transport is not available or if the travel time including waiting exceeds the criteria defined by law. Pupils who are entitled to free transport are obliged to walk to/from the bus stop or another place, where the school transport begins or ends.
If the pupil lives with their parents in alternating weeks, for example, due to joint custody, school transport is only organised to/from one address, i.e. the address registered in the Population Information System.
School transport to the secondary school
When the pupil attends a secondary school, it is a prerequisite for admission that the guardian is responsible for transporting or escorting the pupil as well as for the related costs. The city may grant assistance for transport costs to the secondary school upon application, if the pupil is eligible for free transport to their primary school. However, in order to be eligible for the assistance, the distance to the secondary school must also exceed five kilometres. Submit an application electronically via ‘Hakemukset ja päätökset (Applications and decisions)’ in Wilma by clicking on ‘Tee uusi hakemus (Submit a new application)’ under ‘Hakemus kuljetusavustuksesta toissijaiseen kouluun (Application for transport assistance to a secondary school)’.
The prerequisite for the admission of residents living in other municipalities is that their guardians arrange the pupils’ transport and pay for all the travel expenses.
School transport benefit
School transport benefit is granted to pupils in grades 1–3 as well as pupils in pre-primary education only, whose distance to their assigned primary school is 3–5 kilometres. The benefit is granted in cases where the parent is responsible for transporting or escorting the pupil. The benefit is equal to the cheapest public transport ticket product calculated on the basis of the distance of the school transport, and it is paid afterwards for each semester upon application. The city also has the right, but is not obliged, to arrange transport instead of granting benefit if the transport can easily be combined with existing bus routes or contract transport. Submit an application electronically via ‘Hakemukset ja päätökset (Applications and decisions)’ in Wilma by clicking on ‘Tee uusi hakemus (Submit a new application)’ under ‘Koulumatka-avustushakemus (Application for school transport assistance)’.
The service is free of charge.
Service background and legislation
Pupils in pre-primary or basic education are entitled to free school transport organised by the municipality if
- the distance to school is over five kilometres one way or
- the journey otherwise is too difficult, strenuous or dangerous in view of the pupil’s age or circumstances.
The daily travel to school and back home may take at most two and a half hours including any waiting time, and for pupils aged 13 or over, three hours.
An alternative to free transport is a subsidy granted to the parents for transporting and accompanying the pupil.