Free School Meals

Free School Meals

From Friday 3 April South Lanarkshire Council have in place new arrangements to send PayPoint vouchers directly to parents/carers of children who are entitled to free school meals.

These will replace the ‘take and go’ lunches that have been available from our emergency childcare hubs and some other schools. These lunches will not be available for collection after 3 April.

Parents/carers of eligible children do not need to apply for this payment.

A £30 voucher will be sent to you on a fortnightly basis using the mobile phone numbers or email addresses we already hold for you. If we don’t have your number or email we will post the vouchers to you.

The first £30 payments will be made on Friday 3 April, covering weeks commencing 30 March and 6 April.

A second payment will be made on Thursday 9 April (as Friday 10 April is a public holiday), covering weeks beginning 13 and 20 April.

Advance payments will continue every fortnight thereafter from Friday 24 April.

Scottish Government guidelines suggest that payments should reflect what councils charge for school lunches. As the cost of a school lunch in South Lanarkshire is £1.70, the £30 fortnightly payment considerably exceeds that. The payment is also in line with the UK Government’s £15 a week vouchers system.

Payments will be made only to those entitled to means-tested free school meals. This includes children in Primaries 1 to 3, who will be assessed for free school meal entitlement. Again, this is in line with Scottish Government guidelines.

For more information on eligibility see:

https://www.southlanarkshire.gov.uk/info/200259/education_benefits/159/school_clothing_grants_and_free_school_meals/2

The payment vouchers can be redeemed for cash at any PayPoint outlet, of which there are more than 100 across South Lanarkshire. Parents/carers can then purchase food for children, bearing in mind current advice on limiting excursions and social distancing.

For details of PayPoint outlets see:

https://consumer.paypoint.com/

Payments will be made automatically using information held by the council, so applications are not necessary. However, contact details can be updated and other enquiries can be sent by accessing:

https://www.southlanarkshire.gov.uk/forms/form/348/en/covid-19_-_free_school_meals_enquiry

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