Last updated:
18 January 2017

Free school meals

Find out whether your child qualifies for free school meals and how to apply.

1 Is my child eligible?

Free school meals are available from all maintained schools, academies and free schools in West Sussex if you are either a low income family or you meet any of the following criteria:

If you are not eligible for benefits-related free school meals, but your child is currently in Reception, year 1 or year 2, they will automatically be entitled to Universal Infant Free School Meals and you need not apply. Please contact your school for details.

If you are eligible for benefits-related free school meals in accordance with the above criteria and your child is also receiving Universal Infant Free School Meals, please continue to register. This will enable your child's school to claim valuable 'pupil premium' funding.

Please see GOV.UK for eligibility guidelines for meals for students aged over 16 and speak to their establishment if you are interested in finding out more.

2 How to apply

If you are in receipt of any of the benefits specified on Is my child eligible?, you can apply online.

Apply online for free school meals

You can also apply by downloading and completing the below application form, returning by email or post (instructions on form).

Once your application has been successfully processed, we will send you a confirmation. We will check your eligibility every three months and notify you and the school your child attends if you are no longer eligible.

3 If your circumstances change

If your circumstances have changed, please contact us, as you may need to make a new application. For example:

  • there is a change in the benefits you receive
  • your child changes school to a school that is not within West Sussex. In this case, please contact the new local authority and inform West Sussex.

Note: you do not need to re-apply when your child is moving from primary to secondary school or changing schools, as long as the new school is within West Sussex.

4 Contact us

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