Scottish parents are set to receive £125 to help feed their children over the Easter school holidays.

The payment will be made to parents and guardians of eligible children between March 19 and March 22.

If you already receive free school meals then money will be automatically paid into your bank account.

During lockdown, councils have been paying £25 per fortnight to support families who are on free school meals while they are learning from home.

However, next month they will be paid an additional £100 to help over the Easter Holidays.

You can find out if you can apply here.

Irvine Times:


Your child can get free meals in school if you get:

  • Universal Credit (where your monthly earned income is not more than £610)
  • Income Support
  • Income-based Job Seeker's Allowance
  • Income-based Employment and Support Allowance
  • Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999

Your child is also entitled to free school lunches if you get:

  • Child Tax Credit, but not Working Tax Credit, and your income is less than £16,105
  • Both Child Tax Credit and Working Tax Credit and have an income of up to £7,330

Free school meals in primary 1,2 and 3

Every child in Scotland at a local council school can get free school lunches during term-time in primary 1, 2 and 3. This applies to all children in these years - your family's financial circumstances do not matter.

Contact your child's school or local council if your child is not getting free lunches at this age.

Some children in funded childcare before starting school (early learning and childcare) can also get free meals.

Free lunches for children before they go to school

All children in funded early learning and childcare can get free lunches.

Your child can also get a free lunch in early learning and childcare if you get any of the benefits above.

Irvine Times:

Other free food and drink in schools

Some local councils and schools offer other free food and drink for pupils including free:

  • Milk
  • Breakfast
  • Fruit

Check with your child's school or your local council to find out what's available in your area.

Getting free lunches if you're not getting benefits or tax credits

Your child might still get a free lunch in school, early learning or childcare if you're experiencing financial hardship. This could be because:

  • Your immigration status means you can not get help from the government
  • You're still waiting on your first Universal Credit notice

Your child may also be able to get a free lunch if at any point since they were aged 2 they've been:

  • Looked after
  • Had a Kinship Care Order
  • Had a Guardianship Order

Irvine Times:

What has the Scottish Government said?

Communities Secretary Aileen Campbell said: "We know that many families are struggling financially due to the pandemic, whether through lost earnings, increased food costs or simply needing to run their heating more.

"This additional payment will hopefully have helped ease the strain they are facing.

"We have now provided over £50 million in additional funding to local authorities to continue the provision of Free School Meals during school closures, periods of online learning and holidays from the summer, and we are committed to do so through the forthcoming Easter holidays.

"The provision of Free School Meals outside of term time and the £100 payment are just two of the ways we’re working to support people and communities."