Independent Travel Training Programme

Here you can find out a weatlh of information regarding Ascent Academies Trust and Independent travel training programme (ITTP). It is supported by Sunderland Council.
The ITTP was developed in partnership with Sunderland Council and supports all schools/colleges in the Sunderland area.

Please see below for more information.

What is travel training?

Travel training is the process by which you can learn to make a trip between two places on your own, safely. The programme mainly focuses on trips from school to home and home to school but we also support learners to travel to other various destinations. All travel training is flexible, so throughout the whole training process the various components will be monitored and reviewed and can be changed if necessary to meet your child’s needs.

The aim of the travel training programme is to improve the learner’s confidence and help you to develop the skills needed to travel independently. This should broaden your travel horizons and enable you to access new life opportunities for now and for the future.

The ITTP program is ran through the Ascent Academies Trust to support young people with Learning disabilities within the Sunderland area. Travel training may be offered on a 1-2-1 basis or as a group session within schools. The programme includes; offer an overview of ITT, personal safety, road safety, and journey planning followed by a practical journey. Any ITTP offered to individuals will be built around their current skills and needs in order to develop your knowledge and confidence to become safe independent travellers.

Why do travel training?

By participating in the Independent Travel Training Programme, you will be making a positive lifestyle choice. Travel training will allow your child to develop the confidence and skills needed to travel alone, making it easier for them to make new friends, meet up with existing friends, find a job, go to college and become more independent in other areas of their life. Before enrolling on the programme students should be at Stage 3.15 on the Travel training Stages. For more information on Travel Stages please click on the attachment below.

Independent Travel Stages

Travel Training process

All travel trainers are fully qualified with over 17 years combined experienced working with students as young as 10 all the way up to 25 from various schools/colleges.

As part of ITTP, the travel trainer will identify a route for the student to travel from home to school and back again. This route will be risked assessed to ensure it is the safest and most appropriate route for the learner to take. The student will work through each of the travel stages with support and gradually the support is reduced until the learner can complete a journey independently.
Each stage is recorded with their progress and feedback. The student will not move onto the next stage without consent from both student/parent.

After training has been completed, the travel trainer will keep in contact with both student and parent/carer to make sure things are going well. This is done to ensure that the individual is coping well and offered additional support if needed.

Our Travel Trainers




Maria Parry – Independent Travel Training Trainer

Who is eligible for travel training?

  • Resident of Sunderland area
  • Usually aged 10+
  • Accessing education, training or work
  • Currently using our dedicated transport (taxi)

Cost of programme?

ITTP is completely free.

Students will be responsible for the cost of the travel during the training but there is a number of resources that can help towards the cost of transport;

  • Concessionary travel pass(disabled)- this can be applied for through Sunderland council’s blue badge department.
  • Day passes
  • Pop Card
  • College funding