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Provision of free school meals during October half term

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During the course of the COVID 19 pandemic, specific financial support for pupils entitled to FSM was initially provided by the government during school holiday periods, but this came to an end once schools re-opened in September 2020.

The government then provided funding, via the DWP COVID Winter Grant Scheme and the COVID Local Support Grant and its extension, to support vulnerable households and families with children particularly affected by the pandemic throughout the winter of 2020-21 period with the cost of food, energy (heating, cooking, lighting), water bills (including sewerage) and other essentials.

In the absence of specific and ring-fenced funding for FSMs pupils over school holiday periods, Southwark chose to use this grant funding to make meal provision over the holiday periods from Christmas 2020 through to the summer holiday 2021. From the autumn 2021, government provision of the Household Support Fund (HSF) allowed local authorities to target the hardest-hit families and individuals directly with daily needs such as food, clothing and utilities over the winter. Southwark set a proportion aside to support pupils entitled to FSM during the 2021-22 winter and spring school holidays of October half term, Christmas, February half term and Easter. This funding has been extended and Southwark has decided to use part of it to fund FSM over the October half term 2022.

Southwark’s Offer – October half term break 2022:

Southwark remains committed to supporting its disadvantaged pupils during the October half term 2022 and will do this by using part of the Household Support Fund to fund meals for those pupils who are eligible to receive benefits-related FSM.

What costs can be claimed?

The cost of meals/vouchers provided to any pupils entitled to benefits-related FSM during the October half term 2022 holiday.
This includes;

  • All nursery pupils, regardless of whether they are part or full-time.
  • Those pupils who qualify under the temporary extension of free school meals eligibility to NRPF groups.

The claim period covers 5 week days, from Monday 24th October to Friday 28th October 2022, inclusive.

How much is the cost of a meal or voucher?

Reimbursement will be at £3.00 per meal or voucher provided per week day, £15 in total for the 5 days of the October half term holiday.

How to claim

All pupils entitled to Free School Meals during the October half term holiday 2022

All schools should;
1. Download from their MIS, a report listing pupils entitled to FSM on Friday 14th October 2022;
2. The report only requires UPNs of pupils eligible for FSM (no names, please);
3. Forward the report to Schools Finance by Thursday 17th November 2022.

Date that claims are to be made by: Thursday 17th November 2022.