West Lothian Council Executive approved the terms of a report which will see more school pupils benefit with changes already in place for the current school year, 2021-2022.
The report noted that from August 2021, the universal free meal provision has been extended to include all P4 pupils, and will be extended further at all P5 pupils in January 2022.
In order to ensure that there is consistency with the expansion of free meal provision the contingency arrangements have already been amended to ensure that from 17 August 2021, families of P5-S6 children and young people for free school meals; and P1-P4 pupils in receipt of school clothing grant receive a payment of £3 per child for each day that their child has been unable to attend school as a consequence of national COVID19 restrictions on the opening of schools, or an individual requirement to self-isolate due to a positive COVID19 test result.
If your child has missed school due to self-isolation due to Covid-19 and you are in receipt of a School Clothing Grant for a child in P1-P4 or Free School Meals for a child in P5-S6 then an online form must be completed to ensure you continue to receive your entitlement.
This can be found via the Free School Meals page on the West Lothian Council website: https://www.westlothian.gov.uk/article/43281/School-Clothing-Grants-Free-School-Meals-Milk
If you require any assistance then please get in touch with EducationBenefits@westlothian.gov.uk
Before completing the form, please take a moment to read over the following information which set out qualifying criteria for payment and requirements for how you must submit your information:
· P1 to P4 pupil and recently received a school clothing grant.
· P5 to S6 and be in receipt of free school meals.
· The information you provide will be cross referenced with pupil school attendance records.
· Payment will be made to the bank account you notified us of in your recent meals/clothing application (this can be updated at the end of the form if required).
· You will be required to complete one form per child for each period of isolation.
Executive councillor for education, David Dodds said: "The provision of free school meals to all eligible children and young people has been a key objective of the council during the period of school closures, and subsequent holiday periods.
"The proposed amendments to the contingency arrangements will further extend the support offered to children and young people in low income families, and avoid problems of access for children and young people."