Universal Free School Meals

As you may be aware, the Government introduced the Universal Free School Meals Scheme (UIFSM), which means all children in Year R, Year 1 and Year 2 automatically quality for FREE nutritious school meals to maximise their learning at this critically important time in their school life. 

Thousands of children already benefit from this scheme across the country. However, we recognise that some parents are confused as to whether they need to register and are consequently not taking advantage of this scheme which could save you over £400 a year for each child in KS1. For UIFSM, parents do not need to register unless they qualify for income based free school meals. 

The income based free school meal system is separate from UIFSM. Whatever year group your child is in, you could help your school even further by registering for free school meals. Your school can then receive Government funding to provide an even greater quality learning experience.

This criteria for eligibility is where parents/guardians are in receipt of one or more benefits:

  • Income Support
  • Income-based Job Seekers' Allowance
  • Employment and Support Allowance (Income Related)
  • Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • Families in receipt of Child Tax Credit will also qualify provided that (a) they are NOT entitled to Working Tax Credit, and (b) their annual income, as assessed by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs does not exceed £16,190 (subject to annual review)*
  • Guarantee element of State Pension Credit

No other benefits qualify for free school meals from Key Stage 2 and/or pupil premium from Key Stage 1.

A parent may wish to check their child's eligibility for pupil premium or continued free school meals (from Key Stage 2) and HC3S has an on-line system for this.

Go to 



 and follow the link for 'free meals'

To complete a check you will need the following information for yourself, or the person you are checking on behalf of:

  • Name, home address and email address
  • National Insurance Number or National Asylum Support Service reference number
  • Child'sChildren's name(s), date(s) of birth and the school(s) their child/children is, or will be attending.

Pupil Premium is an important payment for schools and a really good opportunity for eligible parents to get even more support for their children in schools. To find out more please click on the Pupil Premium tabs on the school website.