Free School Meals - information and how to apply
Free meals are automatically available to all Key Stage 1 (Reception, Year 1 and Year 2) children under the Universal Infant School Meals Scheme. You can apply for free school meals for older children in full-time education up to the age of 18 if you are in receipt of certain benefits.
Does my child qualify for free school meals?
If you are in receipt of any of the following, your child may be eligible for free school meals.
- Income Support
- Income based Job Seekers Allowance
- Income related Employment and Support Allowance
- Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
- Child Tax Credit, with no element of Working Tax Credit, and a household income below £16,190 (as assessed by HM Revenue and Customs)
- Guarantee Element of State Pension Credit
- Universal Credit - income dependant
Children in care or children with Special Educational Needs (SEN)
Children in care or children with SEN do not automatically qualify for free schools meals. No discretionary services are offered to these children as free schools meals is a means tested scheme. The family will need to meet the eligibility criteria above.
If a child resides in a local authority care home they will not qualify for free school meals. This is because government funding has already been allocated to fund their meals.
Apply for Free School Meals by clicking here:
What happens next?
- Your claim will be sent to the County Council's free school meals team for authorisation.
- The school will be informed within three working days when authorisation has been confirmed. You will then need to find out from your school how to order and access the meals.
How much will the school receive for my child's meal?
- The school will receive £2.30 towards the cost of your child's meal.
What if my circumstances change?
You need to let Northants County Council know if there is a change in circumstances which may affect your child receiving free school meals. Please contact the free school meal team if:
- you stop receiving an eligible benefit
- you change your address or contact details
Contact the free school meals team:
If you require any help or support in checking your eligibility for free school meals, please do not hesitate to get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org