Children eligible for free school meals will be able to use a national voucher scheme allowing them to continue to access meals whilst they stay at home.
Please note that pupils who receive free school meals under the Universal Infant scheme, whose parents are not in receipt of a qualifying income related benefit, will not be given assistance with free school meals.
Schools will be able to provide every eligible child with a weekly shopping voucher worth £15 to spend at supermarkets while schools are closed due to coronavirus.
Schools can continue to provide meals for collection or delivery themselves, but where this is not possible the scheme will allow schools to provide vouchers to families electronically, or as a gift card for those without internet access.
The vouchers can be spent on food at a range of shops including:
The Department for Education (DfE) is working to get more shops to join the scheme as soon as possible.
Schools have been contacting parents/and or guardians directly if their children are eligible for free school meals or meal vouchers.
If your circumstances have changed recently and you think you may be eligible for free school meals, please apply for free school meals online.
Once your application is processed, if you're not eligible for free school meals currently, we'll pass you details to the relevant school to be considered for the school’s discretionary provision.
Parents and carers wanting more information should speak directly to their child’s school.
Information for schools
Schools have been emailed by the DfE’s chosen supplier, Edenred. Schools will then either be able to:
- order vouchers individually online and have a code sent via email to each family. The family can then show the code on their phone at the supermarket, or;
- arrange a bulk order of multiple codes and receive an excel spreadsheet to help schools organise sending on to a family, or create an eGift card for a preferred supermarket to be posted to a family if parents cannot get online