The Programme for Independent Travel Training (PITT) was borne out of an idea that was initiated in Hull City Council in 2002. ‘Getting There’ was a scheme for Independent travel and a pack had been developed for use by teachers.
Subsequent years saw a growth of opinion amongst staff involved in transport provision in Tyne and Wear to create an Independent Travel Training Scheme in the area.
A true partnership developed between the five Local Authority’s, five Further Education Colleges, NEXUS (the local PTE), Connexions, Work Based Learning providers and the Learning and Skills Council and a scheme was devised that has proven successful and has developed over the years.
The scheme is now embedded within Tyne and Wear where we have: -
1. Had a number of students who have successfully completed the scheme and are travelling independently.
2. A number of students currently on the scheme at various stages on a rolling programme.
3. A DVD and booklet for students to assist with their training.
4. A parents pack to show the value of independent travel.
5. Area co-ordinators and travel trainers that are CRB checked can undertake accredited training programmes.
6. A dedicated travel training area within Beacon Hill School and a further one proposed.
7. A consultancy service that considers travel in the area and concludes in an audit of travel, offering independent travel training solutions
These are exiting times in PITT . We have a very successful scheme and a business plan for the future where there are a number of opportunities and suggestions that we would like to advance. Some of the larger plans are highlighted below.
1. An enhancement to the current travel training area that would include a Metro/Tube station, plus ticket machine and maybe even mock rolling stock. This is currently under discussion.
2. A second travel training area. Discussions are currently taking place with South Tyneside College with regard to this possibility.
3. Another DVD building upon the first one that includes information for parents. Finance has been agreed for this project and it is currently being filmed.
All of these are anticipated to enhance the image of the scheme and ultimately to help more young people travel independently.
We are also happy to receive any comments or suggestions from young people, parents or other practitioners as to what may help students.