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Free School Meals

FSMs

If you are a parent in receipt of any of the benefits listed below, your child is likely to be eligible for free school meals. It's quick and simple to apply online via our Family Portal - you'll find a link to the Portal in the 'links' section below and guidance around how to apply in the 'media' section.

Claims for children starting Reception class in September should be made from August onwards. Please only submit applications for children who do not currently have authorised claims. 

If you aren't sure if you are eligible, please contact us on 0191 561 1417 or freeschoolmeals@togetherforchildren.org.uk and one of the team will try to help you. 

Your child might be able to get free school meals if you 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 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 -  your household income must be less than £7,400 a year (after tax and not including any benefits you get)

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

If your child is eligible for and getting free school meals at any time before 31 March 2022, they'll remain eligible until this date.

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

Please apply if you get any of these benefits - your child's school can also get extra funding if you do. Free school meals are only available to school aged children (Reception onwards). 

If your child is eligible for and getting free school meals at any time before 31 March 2022, they'll remain eligible until this date.

Change in free school meal guidance for households with no recourse to public funds (NRPF)

The following groups may be entitled, subject to maximum income thresholds

  • Zambrano carers
  • Families who have no recourse to public funds with a right to remain in the UK on grounds of private and family life under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights
  • Families receiving support under Section 17 of the Children Act 1989 who are also subject to a no recourse to public funds restriction
  • A subset of failed asylum seekers supported under Section 4 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • Chen carers
  • Families holding a BN(O) passport
  • Spousal visa holders
  • Work visa holders
  • Student visa holders
  • Those with no immigration status

The maximum income threshold differs based on the number of children that your family has.

Income thresholds

Annual household income thresholds for families able to work are:

£22,700 for families with 1 child

£26,300 for families with 2 or more children

Please contact the free School Meals team for a self-declaration form, which should be signed and submitted with evidence of earnings or financial support.

 

 

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