School Travel Planning

How to develop a School Travel Plan

What is a School Travel Plan?

A School Travel Plan (STP) is a document which highlights a package of practical measures outlining how a school will promote sustainable modes of travel to and from school by pupils, staff and visitors.

Initiatives and measures highlighted within an STP could be for the following modes of travel; walking, cycling, scooting, public transport, car sharing or other sustainable travel choices. A STP also covers road safety initiatives. 

Developing a School Travel Plan has a number of benefits for a school, including:

  • Helping promote a healthy lifestyle to pupils by encouraging active travel
  • Helping reduce congestion around the school gates and reduce problems with parking. It is estimated that 1 in 5 cars on the UK’s road during rush hour are on the school run
  • Increase road safety awareness
  • Help reduce CO2 emissions
  • Help encourage future use of sustainable travel in the Borough and raise awareness of the benefits of sustainable travel
  • Promote good relationships with neighbours through a reduction in congestion
  • Opportunities to link your STP with the school curriculum

Milton Keynes Council can help your school to develop a travel plan which will help you monitor your travel levels and undertake relevant initiatives.

STARS programme

The Modeshift STARS programme is an online school travel plan monitoring system, making it easier for schools to develop, monitor and review their travel plans.

It is the national schools award scheme that has been established to recognise schools that have demonstrated excellence in supporting cycling, walking and other forms of sustainable travel.

At a basic level the system allows you to capture:

  • Basic school information for your STP
  • Issues surrounding travel to your school
  • A site audit
  • Travel survey data
  • Targets
  • Action plan to promote sustainable travel
  • Monitoring actions

The STARS system is free for schools in Milton Keynes to use. Support in using the system can be provided by Milton Keynes Council.

For more information and help using STARS please contact us at: 

More information about STARS can be found on the website


  • Park and Walk – parking away from the school gate and walking the remainder of the way to school. Schools could identify and liaise with car park holders in the local areas and negotiate the use of the car park for school pick up and drop off time.
  • Walk to School Week (and Walk to School Month) – Walk to School Week and month are national campaigns aimed to encourage school children to walk to school. The campaign is run by the sustainable charity Living Streets. 
  • Promotion – schools can highlight sustainable modes of travel to school in assemblies, newsletters and other communications with parents.

For information about road safety initiatives for your school please visit: Road Safety for Schools

Sustainable Modes of Travel Strategy

All Local Authorities have a duty to promote sustainable travel to school. Our Sustainable Modes of Travel Strategy (SMOTS) outlines how Milton Keynes Council is fulfilling this duty. Our SMOTS can be found here: Sustainable Modes of Travel Strategy (PDF, 692KB).  

Useful links
To help you with your School Travel Plan:

Last Updated: 31 January 2020