Universal Infant Free School Meals

The government has recently announced that from September 2014 all children in reception, year 1 and year 2, in state-funded schools in England, will receive free school meals.


In addition to the funding made available by the government, the Department for Education will be providing funding for a support service. This will including a national advice line to help infant and primary schools get ready to provide free school lunches to all infant pupils.


Key points

  • Starting from the 2014 to 2015 academic year schools will be paid funding (at a flat rate of £2.30 for each meal) for every eligible pupils. These initial allocations will be based on the estimate from the national take-up and then adjusted once the department has details of the actual number of meals taken in individual schools.
  • Additional one-off funding will be provided in the 2014 to 2015 financial year to small schools (those with up to 150 pupils in total) to help with transitional costs. The government is providing £150 million of capital funding in the 2014 to 20 15 financial year to support the rollout of UIFSM.
  • Targeted advice and support will be provided to schools and local authorities through the UIFSM implementation support service.


Esky is delighted to hear that such a scheme will be coming into effect, resulting in children from families who may struggle to afford hot meals receiving free school lunches. The scheme will also qualify the school for additional funding for education, to helping extend or improve kitchen facilities, and address transitional costs.


If you are from a school that will be starting to introduce hot school meals, and would like to know more about the legal requirements and training required to serve and produce food, feel free to get in touch.   


To find out more about our Food Safety Level Two training, click here.

If you have any questions why not send us an email via our contact page, we will try and find out the answer and get back to you.


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