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Free School Meals - Frequently Asked Questions

Free School Meals and extra funding for your school

Free school meals are available to all pupils in maintained schools, academies and free schools.

 

Changes to Free School Meals from 1st April 2018

If your child is eligible to receive a free school meal at any time before March 2022, they will retain their eligibility until this date. If your child is still in education in March 2022, they will retain their eligibility until the end of their current phase of education, primary or secondary.

 

Eligibility Criteria

Your child will be eligible if you receive one of the following:

 
     
  • Universal Credit (provided you have an annual net earned income of no more than £7,400, as assessed by earnings from up to three of your most recent assessment periods)
  • Income Support
  • Income-based Job Seekers Allowance
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Child Tax Credit (provided you are not also entitled to Working Tax Credit and have an annual gross income of no more than £16,190)
  • Support under part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • Guarantee Element of State Pension Credit
  • Working Tax Credit run-on - paid for four weeks after you stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit

    Children, who receive these benefits directly instead of through a parent or guardian can also get a free school meal.

    Infant School age Children

    Children who attend reception to year 2 are entitled to a meal free of charge under a government scheme called Universal Infant Free School Meals, but your school still needs you to register to enable them to receive the extra funding.

    Pupil Premium - extra funding

    Your school will receive extra funding for all children recorded as being eligible for a free school meal. Funding is used to help your child.

    Reception to Year 6: £1,320 per year.

    Year 7 to 11: £935 per year

    Your child does not need to take the meal if you would prefer them not to, but by being registered your school will receive the extra funding.

    Apply

    You can apply online quickly and simply by clicking on apply online link below.

    Apply for free school meals online here

    .

    You can also:

    Download and print an application form (PDF 76kb)

    You can scan and email your completed form back to:

    benefitsservice@walsall.gov.uk

     

    or send it into us.

    Or you can get a free school meals application form from:

    your child(ren)’s school

    the Benefits Service at the First Stop Shop, Civic Centre, Darwall Street, Walsall,WS1 1XU - by calling in person or telephoning us on 0300 555 2855