Free school meals

Universal free school meals 

If your child is in year 2 or below they can get free school meals. If you receive certain benefits, your child’s school can also get some additional money to support their learning if you register. For more information speak to your child's school or apply online.

Year 3 or above 

If your child is under 19 and in full-time education, you may be able to get free school meals for them. The quickest and easiest way to apply for school meals is to apply online.

  • Who can get them

    Your child must attend a maintained school (most schools in Kent are maintained schools) or receive alternative education approved by Kent County Council.

    Children attending private or independent schools can’t get free school meals.

    You must receive one of these benefits to qualify:

    • Income Support
    • Income Based Jobseekers Allowance
    • Child Tax Credit (not including Working Tax Credit) - if the household income is below £16,190
    • Guaranteed Element of State Pension Credit
    • an income-related Employment and Support Allowance
    • support under part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 if you are an asylum seeker

    We may ask for proof of benefit after you apply.

  • Apply online

    Apply for your child's free school meals online. Your eligibility will be checked and your application processed straight away.

    Apply now

  • Change your details

    If your circumstances change you need to get in touch with us as you may need to make a new application.

    For example: 

    • there is a change in the benefits you receive
    • your child changes school during the school year.

    You do not need to re-apply when your child is moving from primary to secondary school.

    Call us on 03000 41 64 64 between 8:30am and 5pm, Monday to Friday, if your circumstances have changed.

If you can't apply online, print and fill in the free school meals application form (PDF, 587.7 KB).  

You do not need to send any proof of benefit with your application, but we may ask for proof of benefit if there is a query around eligibility.