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Free School Meals

Volume 502: debated on Monday 14 December 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many and what proportion of students in school sixth forms were entitled to free school meals in the latest 12 month period for which data are available; and if he will make a statement. (304751)

The requested information is shown in the following table:

State-funded secondary schools1, 2: School meal arrangements of sixth-form pupils3, 4, as at January 2009, in England

Number/percentage

All pupils

391,660

Pupils eligible for free school meals

20,470

Percentage of pupils eligible for free school meals

5.2

1 Includes middle schools as deemed.

2 Include city technology colleges and academies.

3 Sole and dual (main) registrations.

4 Sixth form defined as pupils in National Curriculum year groups 12, 13 and 14.

Source:

School Census.

Pupils are recorded as eligible only if a claim for free school meals has been made by them or on their behalf by parents and either (a) the relevant authority has confirmed their eligibility and a free school meal is currently being provided for them, or (b) the school or the local authority have seen the necessary documentation that supports their eligibility, and the administration of the free meal is to follow as a matter of process. It is not known how many pupils could be eligible but are not submitting a claim.

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families in how many (a) primary and (b) secondary schools the proportion of pupils entitled to free school meals has decreased by more than (i) five, (ii) 10, (iii) 15 and (iv) 20 per cent. between 2005 and the latest year for which figures are available; and if he will make a statement. (305176)

The requested information is shown in the table.

Maintained primary1 and state-funded secondary1, 2 schools: Percentage change in free school meal eligibility3 between 2005 and 2009. As at January each year. In England

Primary

Secondary

Number of schools open in both years

16,630

3,200

Number of schools whose percentage FSM has fallen by:

>5 per cent.

7,440

1,400

>10 per cent.

6,480

1,100

>15 per cent.

5,530

840

>20 per cent.

4,690

610

1 Includes middle schools as deemed.

2 Includes city technology colleges and academies.

3 Includes sole and dual (main) registrations.

Note:

Numbers have been rounded to the nearest 10.

Source:

School Census