Free school meal provision up by 60% in Hammersmith and Fulham

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Free school meals “now more vital than ever”

The number of students in Hammersmith & Fulham receiving free school meals has risen by more than a third over the past five years. In secondary schools alone it has shot up by almost 60 per cent over the same period.

Many families across Hammersmith and Fulham are struggling financially during the cost-of-living crisis. The council say free school meals and clothing grants are “now more vital than ever” to alleviate the cost for families who are already financially strained.

Hammersmith and Fulham currently has almost 6,000 students eligible for free school meals – or nearly 29% of all local pupils. The national eligibility average is 22.5%.

Since January the council say 684 applications have been submitted on the free school meals, school clothing grant and healthy meal allowance registration form.

Visits to the webpage with the application form has risen to 5,608 from 2,065 views since before the Covid pandemic in 2019. Since 2017-18, the number of free school meals the council are providing in secondary schools each day has similarly soared from 1,262 to 2,007.

Check your child’s eligibility

Cllr Alex Sanderson, Hammersmith and Fulham’s Cabinet Member for Children and Education, said:

“Our young people are really feeling the effects of these challenging times. We want our students to be fully equipped, supported and comfortable in the school day.

“That’s why we are dedicated to providing necessities like food and uniforms which are vital to our children’s wellbeing as well as educational performance.”

Find out about your child’s eligibility for free school meals and school clothing grants and apply now here.

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