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Free School Meals

Volume 457: debated on Tuesday 6 March 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills whether it is his policy that people in receipt of working tax credit do not qualify for free school meals for their children; and if he will make a statement. (125082)

The Government's working tax credit provides additional financial support to all ‘working families’ that have low incomes. We believe that free school meals should be available to ‘non-working’ families, who we consider are most in need of this additional help.

Children whose parents are in receipt of the following are entitled to receive free school meals:

income support;

income based job seekers allowance;

support under part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999;

child tax credit provided they are not entitled to working tax credit and have an annual income (as assessed by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs) that as of 6 April 2007 does not exceed £14,495;

the guarantee element of state pension credit.

Children who receive income support or income based jobseekers allowance in their own right are also eligible to receive free school meals.