Free School Meals update

Following the First Minister’s announcement about pupils returning to schools, Aberdeenshire Council have made some changes to the free school meal arrangements

Here are the latest arrangements for Free School Meals in Aberdeenshire following the First Minister’s announcement on Tuesday, March 2.

Primary and secondary pupils (15 March 2021 to 4 April 2021)

  • Payment for primary school pupils will cease with effect from 15 March 2021
  • Secondary pupils entitled to statutory free school meals will continue to receive payment for a three-week period from 15 March 2021 to 4 April 2021. The payment of £52.50 per pupil, is comprised by 3 weeks free school meals entitlement at £12.50 per week and £5 per week breakfast money.
  • Payment will be made on or around 15 March 2021.
  • There will be provision of meals for any pupils in attendance and these meals will be provided for in the normal way.

Primary and secondary pupils (Easter break: 5 April 2021 – 18 April 2021)

  • All pupils entitled to statutory free school meals will receive a payment of £135.00 for the period 5 April 2021 to 18 April 2021. The payment is comprised by 2 weeks free school meals entitled at £12.50 per week, £5 per week breakfast money and the inclusion of the Spring Hardship payment of £100 announced by the Scottish Government.
  • Payment will be made on or around 31 March 2021.

Pre-school age child in funded early learning and childcare settings

  • Funding has been made available to support families with pre-school age children in funded early learning and childcare settings who meet the eligibility for free school meals.
  • Families who are eligible will receive a payment of £135.00 per child. This payment includes the £100 Spring Hardship payment announced by the Scottish Government and an extra amount to cover meals over the Easter Break. This is comprised of 2 weeks free school meals entitlement at £12.50 per week and £5.00 per week breakfast money.
  • Payment will be made on or around 31 March 2021.
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Arrangements from 5 April 2021

  • As all pupils will have returned to school after the Easter break, statutory free school meal payments will only be made to those pupils entitled to statutory free school meals if the absence is as a result of non-attendance due to Covid-19 isolation or closure.

Eligibility criteria

Eligible families already in receipt of free school meals, do not have to apply for this funding. If you have recently applied for income based free school meals, please be assured that we are dealing with all applications as quickly as possible and we will contact you direct when your application has been processed.

Families who are on a low income but not currently in receipt of free school meals can check entitlement by completing the following online form: Check entitlement and apply for free school meals.

Children are eligible for free school meals if their parents (or carers) are in receipt of a qualifying benefit. The qualifying benefits and allowances are:

  • Income Support (IS)
  • Income-Based Job Seekers Allowance (JSA)
  • Pension Credit (Guarantee Credit)
  • Any income related element of Employment Support Allowance
  • Child Tax Credit (CTC), but not Working Tax Credit (WTC), and have an income of less than £16,105
  • Both Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit with an income of less than £7,330
  • Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • Universal Credit with monthly take-home pay of less than £610
  • If you are aged 16-18 years-old and receive any of the above qualifying benefits in your own right, you can apply for free school meals.

If you are aged 16-18 years-old and receive any of the above qualifying benefits in your own right, you can apply for free school meals.
For more information please visit the Aberdeenshire Council website.

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