Free School Meals

Applications for Free School Meals can now be made to Central Bedfordshire Council over the phone. Parents and Carers do not have to complete an application form or supply evidence of income. Eligibility can now be checked electronically against information provided by the Department of Education. Central Bedfordshire will check entitlement for all families who have made an application previously on a regular basis. Review forms will no longer be issued to parents and carers individually.

You may qualify for Free School Meals if your child attends a school, full time, in the Central Bedfordshire area and you are in receipt of one of the following:

  • Income Support
  • Income Based Job Seekers Allowance
  • Employment and Support Allowance (Income-Related)
  • Guarantee Element of the State Pension Credit
  • National Asylum Seekers Support (NASS)
  • Child Tax Credit (but not Working Tax Credit), and have an annual income that does not exceed £16,190.

Please make sure you have the following to hand when you call Central Bedfordshire Council:

  • National Insurance numbers for you and your partner,
  • Your dates of birth
  • Dates of birth for your children.
  • NASS number (if applicable)

Please note that Free School Meals eligibility is not just about claiming food at lunchtime. The Free School Meals measure triggers additional funding (Pupil Premium) for the school to spend on your child’s education. Therefore, parents and carers are encouraged to apply for Free School Meals if eligible, regardless of the intention to take a meal at lunchtime.

If you believe you are entitled to claim Free School Meals, please contact Central Bedfordshire Council on: 0300 300 8306
This line is open 8.30am to 5.30pm Monday to Thursday and 8.30am to 4.30pm Friday