Complete a free school meal application form (PDF, 169KB) and return it to your school if you receive any of the following benefits:

  • Income Support
  • Income-based Job Seeker's Allowance
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • The Guarantee element of State Pension Credit
  • Child Tax Credit, provided they are not entitled to Working Tax Credit and have an annual income (as assessed by HM Revenue & Customs) that does not exceed £16,190
  • Working Tax Credit 'run-on' - the payment someone may receive for a further four weeks after they stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit

Children who receive any of the qualifying benefits listed above in their own right are also eligible to receive free school meals.

Children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 are provided with a free meal by the school. Your school still needs to know if your child would have been entitled to free meals, as it can claim valuable extra funding. Even if you don't want your child to receive a free meal, it is still important to complete the application form so that the school can get extra Government funding towards things like learning support and after-school activities.

Children in Year 3 and above are eligible for free school meals if their parents receive one of the benefits. We would encourage you to apply for free school meals if you think you may qualify.

Applying for assistance

Paper forms are available from your child's school or by contacting You do not have to provide evidence of your income to support your claim, as the Council will check all details through the Department for Education's Free School Meals Eligibility Checking System.

Claims will normally be processed within 10 working days of the form being received, although it may take longer during busy periods at the start of the school year.

You must inform the Council immediately if you change address, stop receiving any of the qualifying support payment/benefits or about any other circumstance that might affect entitlement to free school lunches. If you do not, you may be liable to repay the cost of any lunches taken by your children.

There are some primary and secondary schools in Bexley that administer their own free school meals:

  • Barrington Primary School
  • Bedonwell Infant School
  • Bedonwell Junior School
  • Belvedere Junior School
  • Burnt Oak Junior School
  • Chatsworth Infant School
  • Chislehurst and Sidcup Grammar School
  • Christ Church Primary School
  • Cleeve Park School
  • East Wickham Primary Academy
  • Harris Academy Falconwood
  • Harris Garrard Academy
  • Hurst Primary School
  • Jubilee Primary School
  • King Henry School
  • Northumberland Heath Primary School
  • Northwood Primary School
  • Peareswood Primary School
  • St Augustine C of E Primary School
  • St Catherine's Catholic School
  • St Columba's School for Boys
  • Sherwood Park Primary School
  • Townley Grammar School
  • Trinity Church of England School
  • Willow Bank Primary School

If your child attends one of these schools, you should apply directly to the school. You should also apply to your child's school if it is outside the London Borough of Bexley.

If you have a query about the quality or content of school lunches please contact the school or