Free School Meals
Why apply for Free School Meals?
As a school, we are very keen that all students who are eligible for Free School Meals apply and receive their entitlement.
The benefit for families is that this ensures that students can have a healthy lunch during the school day. Students are provided with a cashless card to pay for their lunch, money is automatically uploaded to their cards. The cashless payment card means that students pay for the Free School Meals in the same way as other students pay, so they are not identified in any way. If your child is registered for Free School Meals, your family is also entitled to receive financial help with Abbeyfield School uniform and trips. Free School Meal supermarket vouchers are issued prior to every school holiday
Who is eligible for Free School Meals?
Your child may be able to get free school meals if you get any of the following:
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)
Applying for Free School Meals
The application form can be found on the Wiltshire Council website
Send the completed form to Wiltshire Council – the postal and email address are on the bottom of the form. Alternatively, you can hand it into the school who will send it on for you.
If you need a paper copy of the form, please ask at reception.
How long will a Free School Meals award last?
The award will remain in place for as long as your child continues to attend a Wiltshire school and you continue to receive one of the qualifying benefits (if your child attends, or transfers to a school in another area, you will have to re -apply to the local authority which is responsible for that school). You are required to notify any changes to your benefit status which may affect your continued entitlement.
My children all go to different schools – should I fill a separate application form for Free School Meals for each child?
The award is made for the family – you can include all your children on one form, so long as they all attend schools in Wiltshire. Wiltshire parents whose children attend schools in another local authority area should contact that authority for Free School Meals.
My child has just started school and already has brothers and sisters who get Free School Meals – do I need to reapply?
Yes – you need to re -apply so that the new child can be included in the family’s current Free School Meals award. Don’t worry if your child is in reception, and is currently only attending part -time. The award can be set in place now, but will only become ‘active’ once the child attends full time.
I qualify for Free School Meals, but the school will know about my financial situation if I apply. Can I apply without the school knowing how much I receive in benefits?
The arrangements for checking benefit evidence do not disclose how much you receive, or even which benefit you receive.
I am a foster carer. Is the child in my care entitled to Free School Meals?
No – children, such as foster children, in the care of the local authority or of a voluntary organisation cannot be considered for Free School Meals.
Who to contact?
For students residing in Wiltshire:
Tel: 01225 713780