Following the introduction of universal credit a pupils FSM status will be protected until either the end of the universal credit roll out period i.e. 31 March 2022 or until the end of their current phase of education. This means that:
- Any claimant who is in receipt of free school meals at 1 April 2018 should continue to receive free school meals whilst Universal Credit is rolled out. This applies even if their circumstances change and they would no longer meet the eligibility criteria
- Any claimant who gains eligibility for free school meals after 1 April 2018 and until the end of universal credit rollout (31 March 2022) should continue to receive free school meals during the Universal Credit rollout period. This applies even if their
circumstances change and they would no longer meet the eligibility criteria
- Pupils joining a school with existing protected siblings already there must apply for FSM in the normal way.
The existence of a protected sibling already in school does not automatically mean the new child will receive a FSM.
Schools should also be aware that where they enter census details of pupils ending FSM after 1st April 2018, they should check with the FSM team at the Council first to find out the reason why entitlement has ended.
All children who are entitled to Free School Meals will show on your BSO list, whether they are covered by transitional protection or not. Please continue to only give a Free School Meal to the children who show on this list.