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Free School Meals to be extended over the Easter Holidays

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Government extension of Free School Meals over the Easter Holiday 

Commenting on the announcement that Free School Meals (FSM) will be available during the school holidays and not just term time, Kevin Courtney, Joint General Secretary of the National Education Union, said:

”The NEU welcomes Ministers announcement that they will pay for the national voucher scheme to operate over the Easter holidays to ensure all children who get free school meals are fed. 

‘This has been an issue of  concern for our members and we are pleased to see that Government has listened to the NEU and others who have asked for FSM to be available throughout the holidays.

”It will be important to get the message out this week that children who qualify for FSM are covered by the national voucher scheme during the Easter holiday period.

”Parents who did not previously qualify for free school meals but whose income has reduced or stopped due to the Coronavirus crisis, may qualify based on their new financial circumstances. Parents and carers should check local authority websites for how to apply. ” 

Cllr Judith Blake, Chair of the LGA’s Children and Young People Board, said:

“We are pleased that the Government has listened to our call to extend the food voucher scheme to cover the Easter holidays.

“No young person should have to go hungry and ensuring vulnerable pupils, including those on free school meals and with special educational needs and disabilities, are provided for is a top priority for councils and schools.

“There are over 1.3 million young people entitled to free school meals and the number of families in need is likely to be much greater as the impact of the coronavirus pandemic has forced thousands of families into financial insecurity, meaning parents who did not previously qualify for free school meals may be eligible for them.

“We will continue to work with the Department for Education to ensure that these families have the certainty they need.”

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