Eligibility and How to Apply for Free School Meals

Changes to Free School Meal eligibility under Universal Credit

The eligibility criteria for free school meals have been changed. This letter explains the changes and how they might affect you.

What are the new eligibility criteria?

Universal Credit with an annual net earned income of no more than £7,400.

· Income Support

· Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance

· Income-related Employment and Support Allowance

· Support under Part 6 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999

· The guarantee element of Pension Credit

· Working Tax Credit run-on (paid for the four weeks after you stop qualifying forWorking Tax Credit)

· Child Tax Credit (with no Working Tax Credit) with an annual income of no more than£16,190, as assessed by HMRC.

· Working Tax Credit run-on paid for 4 weeks after you stop qualifying for Working TaxCredit.

I am currently claiming free school meals - what does this mean for me?                                              Most people won’t be affected by the new criteria. If you are currently claiming free school meals, but don’t meet the new criteria, your child will continue to receive free school meals until the end of the Universal Credit rollout period which is scheduled to end in March 20122.  This will apply even if your earnings rise above the new threshold of if you stop being entitled to Universal Credit.  Once Universal Credit is fully rolled out, your child will keep their free school meal until the end of their current phase of education, i.e. primary or secondary.

I don’t currently claim for free school meals – what does this mean for me? 

If you think you might be eligible for free school meals, please complete and return the Free School Meals Application Form which is available from the school office, the school website or by clicking here

The information you provide will be used to check if you are in receipt of a qualifying benefit, and if you are on Universal Credit, that your earnings do not exceed the threshold. If you claim Universal Credit, your earnings will be assessed from up to three of your last Universal Credit assessment periods. If you are eligible, your child will receive free school meals and the school will receive extra funding. You can check your eligibility for Free School Meals by clicking here or going to https://pps.lgfl.org.uk/

Where can I get more information?

If you need any further information, please speak to a member  of our office team. You can also visit the free school meal website: https://www.gov.uk/apply-free-school-meals

Universal Free School Meals

All pupils in Reception, Year 1 and Year2 recieve a free school meal under the Universal Free School Meals offer. However, the school encourages you to check your eligibility and, if eligible, apply for Free School Meals as this will bring additional income into the school in the form of Pupil Premium funding which is based on how many pupils are eligible for free school meals. 

Eligibility Checker



Click to Download Application Form: Free School Meals [pdf 357KB] Click to Download