Essential maintenance

Due to maintenance, some online services will be unavailable 8am Saturday 28 November until 8am Monday 30 November, We're sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.


Schools, education and childcare Half-Term Free school meals

Do not submit more than one application for half-term free school meals. We're experiencing very high demand and processing applications as quickly as possible.

We will provide free school meals during the half-term break (26 to 30 October 2020) for children who are eligible for an income related free school meal.

You will receive £15 for each eligible child in your household. 


Eligible families will have been receiving a means tested free school meal from the school and will meet the following eligibility criteria. 

Your child qualifies for free school meals if you get 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 - 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) 
  • families on a low income that receive the pupil premium   

This doesn't include children in reception, year one and two, who get free school meals as part of the universal scheme. 

We have a list of eligible children across schools in the city and will check applications against this list. 

The period you can claim for 

This scheme only covers the October half term break from 26 to 30 October 2020. 

If your child’s school closes for two weeks the school will provide support for the other week based on your entitlement to a free school meal. 

We will accept backdated applications until 6pm on Friday 13 November. 


The claim can be paid directly into your bank account or we can arrange a voucher that you can cash in a number of local shops.

We expect to have paid all eligible applications received up to Wednesday 4 November by Friday 6 November.

Applications received after 4 November and before the scheme closes on Friday 13 November will also be paid as soon as possible. 


Where schools have made the decision to close at any other times than the planned half term due to COVID or have sent children home as they are identified as close contacts of a positive case, then the school is responsible for the provision of free school meals.  

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