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How to apply for free school meals

You will need to complete an application form which you can get from school. The person who is in receipt of the qualifying benefit will need to complete the form. You will be asked to complete your full name, DOB and NI number. It is recommended that both parents information is provided, so that we can check both for eligibility.

Alternatively you can apply using a paper application form which you can download or you request a hard copy by calling LCC Customer Service Centre on 01522 782030.

Who is entitled to free school meals?

Parents do not have to pay for school lunches if they receive any of the following:

•Income Support
•income-based Jobseeker's Allowance
•income-related Employment and Support Allowance
•support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
•the Guarantee element of State Pension Credit
•Child Tax Credit, provided they are not entitled to Working Tax Credit* and have an annual household income (as assessed by HM Revenue & Customs) that does not exceed £16,190 (as at April 2012)

*unless in the Working Tax Credit 'run on' - the payment someone may receive for a further 4 weeks after they stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit.

Children who receive any of the qualifying benefits listed above in their own right are also eligible to receive free school meals.

What if my circumstances change?

You should notify the school and the Customer Service Centre on 01522 782030 of any changes:

•if you start work and come off benefit
•if you change address
•if your child changes school

Free School Meals and Heathly Eating

Over the last few years the quality of school food has improved dramatically. Research shows that pupils are more likely to concentrate in lessons if they have eaten a nutritionally balanced meal at lunchtime. By choosing school lunches, not only will you be saving yourself the time of preparing a packed lunch every day, you can also be sure that your child is getting the range and amount of food that will help contribute to their health and well-being. On average parents spend £400 on packed lunches per year for each child, which is money that could be spent on other things.


Ofsted Outstanding