Skip to content
Information document icon

Free school meals and uniform grant

We provide free school meals to all maintained nursery and primary school pupils in Islington, but you need to register. Secondary school pupils can also receive free school meals but you need to apply.

Nursery and primary school  

Your child can get free school meals if they are attending:

  • Islington children’s centres and early years centres
  • a children’s centre in an Islington primary school
  • North Islington, Margaret McMillan or Kate Greenaway nurseries
  • a primary school in Islington from the age of three, full time.

You must register on Citizens Portal to apply for free school meals for your primary school child.

Secondary school

Free school meals are available to some secondary school pupils. Your child may be eligible for free school meals if you get any of the qualifying benefits.

You must apply for free school meals for your secondary school child by using the Citizens Portal.

Students in Further Education

Students aged between 16 and 18 and attending a further education funded institution can claim free meals if you receive one of the qualifying benefits.

You must apply for free meals for students 16 to 18 by using the Citizens Portal.

Qualifying benefits

Your child may be eligible for free school meals if you get any of the qualifying benefits:

  • Income Support
  • Income–based Jobseeker’s Allowance
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Child Tax Credit if your taxable income is less than £16,190 and you are not entitled to Working Tax Credit
  • the guaranteed element of Pension Credit
  • support under Section VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • Working Tax Credit run-on - paid for four weeks after you stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit
  • Universal Credit – if you apply on or after 1 April 2018 and your household income is less than £7,400 a year after tax and before benefits

Children who get paid these benefits directly, and not through a parent or guardian, can also get free school meals. 

Your child might also get free school meals if you get any of these benefits and your child is both

You may be eligible if you have no recourse to public funds, see GOV.UK for more details

If your child is eligible for free school meals, they’ll remain eligible until they finish the phase of schooling (primary or secondary) they’re in on 31 March 2025.


Uniform grant 

Your child can get a one-off uniform grant if they:

  • live in Islington and
  • are eligible for free school meals.

We'll pay £150 to help with the cost of school uniforms when your child moves to secondary school from year 6. If your child lives in another borough, even if they attend school in Islington, you should contact your borough council for support.

If your child is currently in year 6, you previously registered for free school meals and they are eligible under the national criteria, you’ll automatically receive the uniform grant.

If you haven’t registered for free school meals before, you must apply for this service using the Citizen Portal andchoose the free school meals option. Please send the outcome assessment to

Using the Citizens Portal

Download our Citizens Portal User Journey Guide from ‘useful documents’ for step-by-step instructions for using the Citizens Portal to register or apply for free school meals. You must have a working email address to use the Citizens Portal.

More information

For more information, please email the Free School Meals team on

Was this information helpful?

Data protection: We will handle your personal information in line with the Data Protection Act 1998 and in accordance with the council’s Fair Processing Notice.