Free school meals

Free school meals during the national lockdown

Children not attending school

During the national lockdown, children who are currently eligible for benefit related free school meals will receive meal support from their school.  Schools will determine what form of support they will offer, but this could take the form of food parcels or vouchers for local stores and supermarkets.

Please note, children who normally receive a free school meal under the universal infant scheme,  i.e. those children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2, will not be provided with support during the period of national lockdown unless they are also currently eligible on benefit related grounds.

If you believe you have been assessed as eligible for benefit related free school meals, and are not receiving support, please contact your child’s school directly.

Children attending school e.g. children of keyworkers

Children who are attending school during the national lockdown, for example, children of key workers, will receive a meal in school if they would receive one under normal circumstances, irrespective of whether this is provided on benefit or universal infant grounds.

New applications for benefit-related free school meals

Applications for free school meals can be made in school or online via our website.  Please read the information on the following pages fully before you submit an application.

If you do submit an eligibility application please ensure you include all of your children who are of statutory school age (i.e. in Reception classes and above).  

The application will be processed as soon as possible and the result communicated to both you and your child(ren)’s school(s).  If you are eligible, the school(s) will be in touch regarding the support they can offer during the national lockdown

Voucher queries

As we are not involved in the allocation of supermarket vouchers, we are unable to offer any assistance for them. If you believe you should have had a voucher but have not received it, or are having problems accessing or using your voucher, please contact your child's school directly.

Temporary extension of free school meals eligibility to those with no recourse to public funds

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the government has temporarily extended free school meal eligibility to the below groups who have no recourse to public funds.  More information can be found on the government's Coronavirus website. If you wish to submit an application for an assessment of free school meals eligibility under one of these categories, please contact the school(s) your children currently attend. 

  • Children of Zambrano carers.
  • Children of families with no recourse to public funds with a right to remain in the UK on grounds of private and family life under Article 8 of the European Convention of Human Rights.
  • Children of families receiving support under Section 17 of the Children Act 1989 who are also subject to a no recourse to public funds restriction.
  • Children of a subset of failed asylum seekers supported under Section 4 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999.