Free School Meals


Do you qualify for Free School Meals?


 To qualify for free school meals, you must be in receipt of: 

-      Income support 

-      Income based job seekers allowance 

-      Income related employment allowance 

-      Guarantee element of state pension credits 

-      Child tax credits with no working tax credits & an income (assessed by Inland Revenue) of less than £16,190 

-      Support via the Home Office under the National Asylum Support Service 

-      Universal Credit

You do not qualify if you are in receipt of working tax credits


How will I know that my child can have free school meals?

When Barnsley Council receive and process your application, they will send you a confirmation of entitlement letter, and also send a copy to the school. If you’re applying for infant free school meals (Reception, Year 1 and Year 2) Barnsley Council will not write to you to confirm your entitlement as your child will automatically receive a free school meal.


Do I qualify for free school milk?

Yes, if you are registered as being entitled to receive free school meals.


Why has my entitlement ended?

Barnsley Council has not been able to confirm your benefit entitlement. You need to re-apply.


Do I need to apply for my child starting school – my other children already get them?

No, if your child has a sibling attending the same school, the same entitlement will be given automatically. You will need to reapply if your child’s sibling attends a different school.


I’ve changed schools/address; do I need to reapply?

No (Barnsley Council change the details on their system and inform schools, and also check benefit details).


Do you backdate claims?

Free school meals are available from the date of application. Only in exceptional circumstances would Barnsley Council backdate a claim, for example, if benefits were awarded retrospectively. You would have to put your request in writing. 


You can apply online by following the link to the Barnsley Council website here or you can call 01226 787787 between 8:30am and 5:00pm Monday to Thursday, and 8:30am and 4:30pm Friday. 



Early Years Pupil Premium 

Although infant children will automatically receive a free school meal, we're asking families who have a statutory entitlement to free schools meals complete an application form online so that Barnsley Council can check if the school is entitled to receive Pupil Premium for your child.