Free School Meals: Eligibility

Department for Education written question – answered on 2nd February 2018.

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Photo of Tracy Brabin Tracy Brabin Shadow Minister (Education)

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether it is his Department's policy that a prematurely born child whose parents defer their child's school entry date should not be eligible for free school meals for all the years for which that child would otherwise have received free school meals; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Nadhim Zahawi Nadhim Zahawi The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education

The government recognises the benefits of providing a healthy school meal to the most disadvantaged children and are committed to continuing to provide these meals to families in need. There exists a duty on maintained schools, academies and free schools to provide free school meals to pupils of all ages that meet the criteria. The criteria are not age related.

All children in reception, year 1 and year 2 in England's state-funded schools, including academies and free schools, are entitled to free school meals.

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