Free school meals

Free school meals

Check if your child can get free school meals and apply to us.


A lot of people don't apply for free school meals. That's why we are continuing with our campaign to encourage all families to register regardless of if they believe they may be eligible.

You don't need to worry about other children knowing your child gets free school meals. Only the school, and in secondary schools the catering staff, will know.

You could save £400 a year for each child and your children could benefit from a good hot meal at lunchtime. The school will benefit too as they'll get the pupil premium of £1,000 a year from the government for each child eligible for free school meals.

Free school meal entitlement

Your child may be able to get free school meals if you (or the young person themselves, where appropriate) 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 Guarantee element of State Pension Credit
  • Child Tax Credit (provided you're not also entitled to Working Tax Credit* (WTC) and have an annual gross income of no more than £16,190)
  • *You can get this help if you get Working Tax Credit and you are in the four week 'run-on' period where your WTC is due to stop because you have stopped work or reduced your hours
  • Universal Credit
Universal Credit has begun to be rolled out in Derbyshire and will affect all areas of Derbyshire by the end of 2018. 

Government policy regarding school meals and Universal Credit is currently under review. More information will appear as soon as possible.

NB - young people age 16-18 who receive the above benefits or Tax Credits in their own right are also entitled to receive free school meals.

Even if you meet any or all of the above criteria families will not be eligible if they are claiming Working Tax Credit*.

To apply, fill in the form (opens in a new window) on and we'll email you to let you know if your application has been processed and the outcome of the eligibility check.