Two payments worth £123 per pupil

Two additional payments will be made in the coming weeks to East Lothian families eligible and registered for Free School Meals. The combined total of the payments is £123 per child.

A payment of £23 per pupil will be made to cover the Christmas holiday period when schools are closed, representing the cost of free school meals during this 10 day period. The payment will be automatically credited to parents’ bank accounts from 11 December 2020.

A second Winter Support Payment of £100 per pupil will be made during w/c 21 December 2020.

Households who are already registered for Free School Meals will have the money automatically credited to the bank account details that the council currently holds on file – no further action or application is required.

Cabinet member for Education and Children’s Services Councillor Shamin Akhtar said: “This will be welcome news for many families who have faced financial challenges over the course of this year. These payments mean that families who most need support with food will not miss out over the Christmas period when our schools are closed for the break. The Winter Support Payment will be useful for warm clothing and other necessities to help them through the season.

“I’d urge anyone who is eligible for Free School Meals but has not yet registered to do so now.”

Free School Meals are offered for children and young people from p1-S6. These additional payments are for families who are eligible for Free School Meals* and will not be made for universal provision p1-p3.

New applications for Free School Meals are also invited: visit for more information and eligibility criteria or email

*People who receive one of the following benefits are entitled to apply for Free School Meals and a School Clothing Grant:

  • Income Support,
  • Income Based Job Seekers Allowance,
  • Income Related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Child Tax Credit but NOT Working Tax Credit with an annual income less than £16,105
  • Child Tax Credit AND Working Tax Credit with an annual income less than £7,330 
  • Universal Credit - where your monthly take home pay does not exceed £610.


Published: Friday, 11th December 2020