Free School Meals and Pupil Premium

Dear Parent/Guardian/Carer,

I’m writing to you to highlight a really important part of the funding available for your child's education – the Pupil Premium.

All pupils of parents receiving certain benefits are entitled to this extra funding. It aims to help pupils from low income families get the best start in life.

In common with most schools, it is likely that a number of parents, guardians or carers, whose children attend Siddal Moor Sports College, are not claiming free school meals, even though they are entitled to. If they don’t, pupils will not receive the meals and the school will lose out by not receiving the Pupil Premium money, a really important source of income, currently worth £935.00 per eligible pupil.

As parents, guardians or carers, you need to know that registering for free school meals is increasingly important for two key reasons. Firstly, you will know that your child has access to healthy food at lunchtime and is well nourished, ready for learning in the afternoon. Research shows that having a healthy lunch relates to pupils doing better at school, so we’re keen for eligible pupils to take advantage of both. Secondly, the additional funding can help contribute towards additional curriculum opportunities for pupils, such as subsidising or paying for educational trips or residential visits. It can also be used to pay for additional teachers or support staff and helping towards uniform and equipment costs.

Registering the entitlement for your child to have free school meals is important, whether or not your child wishes to eat a school meal regularly. We would like to reassure you this process is confidential, as students claiming free school meals are not identified in any way as different, avoiding any potential stigma or embarrassment.

I strongly encourage you to make a claim if your child is entitled to this extra support. If you believe that you are eligible, please contact the RBC Revenues and Benefits Service helpdesk on 0300 303 8870. Alternatively, visit the RBC website: http://www.rochdale.gov.uk/schools-and-education/Pages/free-school-meals.aspx   

Download and complete the Free School Meals Application form and return it, either to school, to Revenues and Benefits RBC, PO Box 490, Rochdale, OL16 9AJ or hand it in to one of the Customer Services Centres detailed on the form. If you can’t download and print off the form, please ask for the school to provide one for you.


Eligibility

You can apply for free school meals if your child attends a school maintained by Rochdale education authority and you and your child live in the borough. You must also receive any of the following benefits:

  • Income Support (IS).
  • Income-based Jobseekers Allowance (IBJSA).
  • An income-related employment and support allowance.
  • Support under part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999.
  • Child Tax Credit (provided you aren't entitled to Working Tax Credit) and have an income that doesn't exceed the current year’s level.
  • The Guaranteed element of State Pension Credit.
  • Working Tax Credit during the 4-week period immediately after your employment finished.
  • Universal Credit.
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Additional Requirements:
  • You, as the parent or guardian, must Receive Child Benefit for the child you are responsible for.
  • Children who receive IS or IBJSA in their own right are also entitled to receive free school meals.

The funding arrangements for children who are looked after/in care or adopted from care are different. Please contact the Virtual School at sendiass.rochdale@family-action.org.uk or go to www.rochdale.gov.uk and search for ‘Virtual School’.

Mr David Cairns, School Manager


CONTACT INFORMATION:

Free School Meals
Rochdale Borough Council, Number One Riverside, Smith Street, Rochdale, OL16 1XU
Postal application to: Revenues and Benefits, RBC, PO Box 490, Rochdale, OL16 9AJ
Email: council.tax@rochdale.gov.uk
Tel: 0300 303 8870

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