Clothing Grant & Free School Meals 2021/2022

Help with school uniform and school meals 2021 / 2022

Inverclyde Council provides assistance to families who require help with the costs of clothing and school meals.

The following guidance provides you with information on how to apply for a clothing grant and free school meals.

Who can apply for a clothing grant and free school meals?

All children in P1-P5 automatically qualify for free school meals. 

However, if you wish to be considered for the clothing grant you can submit an application form. You may qualify for a clothing grant if one of the following statements applies to your family circumstances:

  • You are currently in receipt of:
  • Income Support (IS);
  • Income based Job Seekers Allowance (JSA);
  • income related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA);
  • Child Tax Credit, but not Working Tax Credit, and your income is less than £16,105 (in 2021/2022) as assessed by HMRC;
  • Working Tax Credit and/or Child Tax Credit and have an income of no more than £11,916; as assessed by HMRC or
  • Universal Credit, where your take home pay does not exceed £970, as shown on your most recent monthly Universal Credit Statement.

or

  • You are seeking asylum and, receiving support under part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1991;

or

  • You look after a child/children as part of a formal Kinship Care agreement, registered by Social Work Services

How much is the clothing grant?

For the academic year 2021/2022 Inverclyde Council’s clothing grant will be £150 for each school aged child in your household.  

When can I apply?

You can apply now.   

The last date a clothing grant application will be considered for the 2021/2022 academic year is 31 May 2022.  Free school meals can be applied for until the last day of term in June 2022.

How do I apply?

This year, Inverclyde Council introduced an on-line system for parents. This will allow applications and supporting evidence to be submitted together, electronically.

You can access the on-line form LIVE Inverclyde FSM / SCA Application form via the link on the right of this page, from a PC or a mobile device. 

If you do not have access to the internet, please contact the Customer Service Centre, on the number shown at the end of this leaflet, where a member of staff will be pleased to assist.

When will my child receive free school meals?

If your application is approved during the summer holidays, free school meals will be available on the first school day back after the summer break. 

For applications received at any other time, meals will be available from the first school day after the application has been approved by Education Services.

When will I hear about my clothing grant application?

To make sure you get your clothing grant before schools return in August, please submit applications and evidence of your qualifying benefit by mid-July 2021.

At all other times, clothing grant payments will be made directly into the bank account you have provided and normally around 10 days after we have a complete application. 

Please ensure your bank account accepts payment by BACS transfer.  If it does not payment will be returned to the Council and your grant will be delayed.

If your child is over the school leaving age and has decided to return to school, the clothing grant payment will not be released until it has been confirmed your child has returned to school following the summer break - this means you will not receive payment before September 2021.

If we are unable to approve your application we will contact you using the phone number and/or email address provided on your application.  If we are unable to reach you using these details we will aim to write to you within 7 days of submission of your application. During busy periods this may take a little longer.

Will I receive confirmation that my application has been approved or that payment has been made?

Due to the volume of applications we receive, we are unable to reply to individual applicants to confirm receipt or authorisation of an application.

If you have not received payment within two weeks of submission of the application and have not heard from us, please contact Education Services on the number shown at the end of this leaflet to check we have received your form.

What if my circumstances change?

You should immediately notify Education Services of the changes by sending an email to EMA.HO@inverclyde.gov.uk.  Alternatively a letter can be sent to Education Services, Wallace Place, Greenock.  PA15 1JB.

It is also your responsibility to make sure that your child’s school has the most up-to-date contact information for you. This helps reduce delays to your application.

Secondary School Transport Grant

If you are entitled to a clothing grant and free school meals for your child, you may also qualify for a transport grant. You do not have to provide a separate application form.

The transport grant is currently £7.25 per week during term time. It is provided to assist with the costs of transporting your child to and from school. If your child attends St Columba’s HS, separate arrangements will apply.

To qualify for the transport grant your child must be a secondary school pupil living between 1 and 2 miles from their catchment school and also be entitled to clothing grant and free school meals for the 2021/2022 academic year.