In these tough economic times – when all of us are feeling our ever decreasing budgets stretched to the limit – it is more important than ever to make the most of what financial support there is available. An easy way for families on low income to get an extra helping hand is to claim free school meals.
School meals offer children a healthy, nutritionally balanced midday meal – keeping their energy levels up for the busy afternoon ahead – while also saving parents the effort of planning and preparing a packed lunch every day.
It goes without saying that free school meals certainly ease the burden of the weekly food shopping bill for those who are eligible. But what some people may not realise is that, as well as saving families money, they also bring valuable additional funds to schools through the Pupil Premium.
The Pupil Premium gives schools an additional £900 for every pupil in receipt of free school meals. Schools are obliged to ensure the extra money directly benefits the children on free school meals. This additional funding can also often have a wider positive impact on attainment across the school. It is still worth claiming free school meals even if your child has packed lunches as the school will then still receive the Pupil Premium money to spend on your child’s education.
Claiming free school meals is a no lose situation for children, parents and schools and applying could not be easier – if you apply online at www.tameside.gov.uk/schoolmeals you will receive an instant decision. Don’t delay – for those most in need there is such thing as a free lunch and it makes sense to start reaping the benefits straight away.