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06 May 2020
Families urged to check if their children are eligible for Free School Meals

Bedford Borough Council is urging families to check if their children are eligible for free school meals as the coronavirus crisis creates more hardship across the Borough.

Children eligible for income-related free school meals are still entitled to receive their free school meal, a food voucher or at-home alternative while schools are closed.

Children who usually receive their meal under the ‘Universal Infant Free School Meals’ (for children in Year R, 1 and 2) are not included in this scheme unless they are also eligible for income-related free school meals.

Where a child was already receiving income-related free school meals and families would like to know what meal options are now available, they are advised to contact the child’s school.

The council is urging families whose  personal circumstances have recently changed  to check if their  child is now eligible to receive income-related free school meals and the current at-home alternative, please read our guidance and application process online at: www.bedford.gov.uk/freeschoolmeals  

Cllr Michael Headley, portfolio holder for Finance said, “Free school meals have always been very important for many children and in the current situation the provision of appropriate alternatives for families is crucial.

“We are concerned that families that are now struggling financially because of the coronavirus outbreak may not realise their child could be eligible for free school meals or where to go for help.

“Our message is that if your financial situation has changed, please go to our website, where you’ll find lots of information about free school meals so that you can check if you might be eligible and there is a simple form to use to apply.”

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