Free school meals
From September 2014, the Government have introduced that all Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 pupils will be eligible for Free School meals. Pupils who are in Year 3 and above and attend school, will be entitled only if they are in receipt of the following benefits:
- Income Support
- Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
- The guaranteed element of Pension Credit
- Child Tax Credit (provided you’re not also entitled to Working Tax Credit and have an annual gross income of no more than £16,190)
- Working Tax Credit run-on - paid for 4 weeks after you stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit
- Universal Credit - if you apply on or after 1 April 2018 your household income must be less than £7,400 a year (after tax and not including any benefits you get)
Children who get paid these benefits directly, instead of through a parent or guardian, can also get free school meals.
If you think you are eligible, please use the following forms to apply.
Alternatively, download and complete the Free School Meals Application Form (PDF)
If you are eligible for free schools meals and apply for them, your school is given additional funding.
In 2014-15 financial year this will be:
- £1,300 per pupil of primary-school age
- £935 per pupil of secondary-school age
- £1,900 per pupil for looked-after children who have been looked after for 1 day or more; are adopted; leave care under a Special Guardianship Order or a Residence Order
This money is used to help provide additional resources for your children.
During a period of entitlement there may be a change in circumstances and free school meals may be withdrawn.
The most common reasons include:
- The parent or guardian ceases to receive a qualifying benefit
- The child leaves school
- The family move out of the borough
- The child is absent from school for a long time
Parents are advised to inform the Business Support Unit if their circumstances change. Parents/carers who are found to be no longer eligible will be written to, inviting them to provide additional evidence to prove that they are still entitled to claim Free School Meals.
Parents/carers will be asked to provide this evidence within three weeks.
Should you have any queries with this process, please e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call Customer Services at Swindon Direct on 01793 445500.