The Government believes that the Pupil Premium funding, which is additional to the main school funding, is the best way to address inequalities between children eligible for free school meals (FSM) and those children who are not. Pupil Premium Funding is used to tackle disadvantage in order to reach the pupils who need it most.
Schools are currently given Pupil Premium funding for those whose families who have registered for FSM. This includes any child who has been registered for FSM at any point during the past 6 years. Schools also receive funding for each pupil who has been looked after for one day or more, has been adopted from care or has left care under a special guardianship order, a residence order or a child arrangement order.
The money is given to schools to support them in enabling all pupils to reach or exceed the nationally expected level for their age. Each school may decide how best to use the funding and they are held accountable for how it has been used to support pupils from low income families.
Often parents are concerned that there is a stigma attached to being seen as a ‘low income’ family. At Alverton, all matters regarding free school meals and Pupil Premium are treated confidentially. The key purpose of our Pupil Premium funding is to enable all the pupils to reach their full potential. We work with our families and colleagues to make sure everyone involved with the child has high aspirations.
We recognise that barriers to achievement take a variety of forms and will do whatever it takes to support a child, both in and out of the classroom. We use our resources to ensure that every child has an equal opportunity to become an empowered learner. In order to achieve this, we offer our children a wide range of opportunities which are accessible for everyone.
Am I eligible?
A child is eligible for free school meals if their parent / carer (or the child themselves) receives of any of the following benefits:
- Income Support (IS)
- Job Seekers' Allowance (Income-Based) and equal based Job Seekers Allowance
- Income Related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA-IR) and equal based Employment and Support Allowance
- Child Tax Credit (CTC) with an annual income of less than £16,190
- Working Tax Credit run-on - paid for 4 weeks after you stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit
- Guarantee Element of Pension Credit (GPC)
- Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 (IAA) Support
- Universal Credit - your household income must be less than £7400 a year (after tax and not including any benefits you get) as assessed by earnings of up to three of your most recent assessment periods
If you are claiming the benefits listed below you are NOT eligible for free school meals, regardless of what other benefits / credits are being claimed:
- Working Tax Credit
- Contribution-Based Job Seeker's Allowance and / or Contribution-Based Employment and Support Allowance
You can apply online at https://www.cornwall.gov.uk/schools-and-education/schools-and-colleges/school-meals/ which can also provide you with more information.