Free School Meals FAQs

Free School Meals application

Is your son/daughter eligible for Free School Meals?

We are aware that many families will be going through a very difficult time at the moment and that income may have reduced.  It may be that because of a change in circumstance that your child/children may be entitled to Free School Meals.  You can quickly check this by visiting the following website:

https://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/schools/free_school_meals.aspx

If you are not eligible to receive support with the cost of school meals, but still need support with the cost of school items such as uniform or equipment, please contact Mrs Stephens on this email: familysupport@wilmslowhigh.com

FSM vouchers during a period of school closure – FAQs

My child is not currently eligible for FSM but I think might be if I applied. How do I apply for my child to become eligible for FSM?
Please apply directly to Cheshire East Council via this link: https://www.cheshireeast.gov.uk/schools/free_school_meals.aspx

What Free School Meal provision will be made during the period of school closure in the Summer Term?
The government has developed “a national approach to providing […] supermarket and shop vouchers”.  The national approach is that e-code vouchers are issued by schools to parents/carers via the government’s appointed provider ‘Edenred’.

How much is the daily FSM allocation provided in the vouchers?
Edenred national e-code voucher scheme rate is £3 per student per day.

The transitional amount used by Wilmslow High School before implementation of the national scheme was at a slightly higher daily rate.

How do I let the school know I wish to receive these vouchers?
If you have not already done so, please could parents/carers of students eligible for FSM click on the following link to complete an online survey in order to indicate whether they wish to take up this offer.

How will I receive FSM vouchers?
As of 27th April 2020, all vouchers for parents/carers are being issued using the government’s Edenred national e-code voucher scheme.

Wilmslow High School used the Tesco voucher scheme to ensure that parents/carers were able to access vouchers before the Edenred national e-code voucher scheme became sufficiently operational.

Prior to 27th April, parents/carers are likely to have received emails from a combination of Tesco and Edenred vouchers.

What value of vouchers have been arranged by the school so far?
Vouchers to the value of £220 per student (breakdown below) have been organised so far by the school.

w/c 23 Marw/c 30 Marw/c 06 Aprw/c 13 Aprw/c 20 Apr*w/c 27 Apr*w/c 04 May*w/c 11 May*w/c 18 May*Total up to and incl. May half term
£17.50£17.50£17.50£17.50£15.00£15.00£15.00£15.00£15.00£145.00

 

w/c 01 Jun*w/c 08 Jun*w/c 15 Jun*w/c 22 Jun*Total since 23 Mar to date
£15.00£15.00£15.00£15.00£220.00

* National Scheme rate per day

 

I have only just indicated I would like a voucher.  What if my financial circumstances do not permit me to wait for the voucher to be issued?
If you are facing acute circumstances, please contact your child’s Head of House to discuss your situation, using the contact details provided in the Home Learning During School Closure.

Edenred (National Scheme) Vouchers FAQs

Please find sample questions from the Edenred FAQs (accessed 01 May 2020) for parents/carers below.

For full Edenred FAQs, please follow this link:  https://www.edenred.co.uk/Documents/DfE/DfE_FreeSchoolMeals_ParentCarerFAQs.pdf

What’s the difference between an eCode and an eGift card?

  • eCode – this is the 16 digit code which your school may email or text to you. You’ll need this code to access freeschoolmeals.co.uk and choose your supermarket eGift card. You cannot use the eCode directly with the retailer, it must be exchanged for an eGift card.
  • eGift card – each supermarket has their own eGift card. To order your eGift, redeem your eCode at freeschoolmeals.co.uk. The eGift card will be sent to the email address entered during check-out and can be spent instore at the chosen supermarket. Alternatively your school may order your eGift card for you and print it and post it, or arrange for you to collect it.

How do I use my eCode to select a supermarket eGift card?

  • You should order your supermarket eGift at home before going to the store.
  • To select your supermarket eGift card, follow the steps below:
  1. Copy eCode from your email or text message
  2. Go to www.freeschoolmeals.co.uk
  3. Enter the 16 digit eCode (you can enter more than one eCode if you have more than one to redeem)
  4. Select a supermarket
  5. Enter the amount and add to basket
  6. Checkout and enter the email address you would like the eGift card sent to
  7. Your eGift card will be processed and sent (please allow up to 24 hours for it to be delivered to your inbox).

I can’t redeem my eCode?

  • You may have entered the incorrect eCode. Please try to enter your eCode again. If your eCode is still not accepted, please delete the browsing history on your device – as your device may be storing the incorrect eCode in its memory.
  • If you received the eCode directly from your school by post or text message:

◦ All eCodes should be 16 digits long. If your eCode has a different number of digits, you can query this with your local school administrator and ask if the eCode is correct.

◦ Your school administrator can also check the status of your eCode, including the eCode’s ‘Activation date’. eCodes will not work until on or after this date.

What supermarkets can I pick from?

  • The below supermarkets are available:
  • Morrisons
  • Tesco
  • Sainsbury’s
  • Asda
  • Waitrose (John Lewis)
  • M&S food
  • Aldi
  • McColl’s (including RS McColl’s and Martin’s)

How do I know what the value of the eCode is?
This is stated in the email sent to you by the school.

Do I have to use the full value of the eCode when choosing my eGift card(s)?
Yes – your balance will be visible on the webpage.

Can I choose to redeem my eCode at more than one supermarket?

  • You can mix and match different supermarket retailers within the same order, provided the total value you’ve chosen for each is equal to total value of the eCode you’ve entered. For example, with a £10 eCode, you could choose £5 for Tesco and £5 for Sainsbury’s.
  • Simply enter the value you would like to order on each supermarket eGift card and your balance will update so you know how much you have left.
  • Please note that the full value of the eCode needs to be redeemed in one transaction, you cannot redeem a partial value of the code and save the rest for later.
  • Most supermarkets accept multiples of £1 per eGift card, however some other supermarkets have larger fixed amounts that can be ordered, e.g £10.

How long do I have to redeem the eCode?
Your eCode will expire after 4 months.

What happens if my eCode has expired?
The eCode is cancelled and the money associated is then returned to the Department for Education.

What can I purchase in-store with the eGift card?
The eGift card is issued to you in respect of the free school meal benefit and will only be accepted in store for the purchase of food and groceries.

How do I know the value of the eGift card I have received?
The value will be present on the eGift card itself.

How do I use a supermarket eGift card?

  • A supermarket eGift card is a digital voucher. The eGift card email contains a link to a barcode which can be presented at the till in-store either on a smartphone screen or printed on a piece of paper, just like a gift card.
  • Some eGift cards can be used to purchase online  [Note:  currently only for Asda and Waitrose]

Does my eGift card need to be used at the supermarket in one transaction?
No – your eGift card can be used in multiple transactions and on multiple visits, until you have spent the eGift card.

My school has ordered an eCode for me, but it hasn’t come through to my email?

  • Firstly, check your junk mail and/or trash folder.
  • If it still hasn’t arrived within 4 days, please contact your school to ensure that they have your correct email address. If your eCode has been sent to the incorrect email address, the school can cancel this order and resend the eCode to the correct email address. If this still doesn’t work, your school can contact Edenred.

I have ordered an eGift card, but it hasn’t come through to my email?

  • Firstly, check your junk mail and/or trash folder. If it still hasn’t arrived within 24 hours, please contact Edenred: freeschoolmealsparentscarers@edenred.com who can look into this for you.
  • If you receive an error message when trying to redeem your code on the free school meals website, please refer to Q3 for guidance.

I can’t see the barcode in the eGift card email

  • This is because some email inbox providers automatically switch off the downloading of images for new emails. You should see a prompt to ‘Display images’ or ‘Download full message’ to see the barcode. Please note that some supermarkets require you to click on a link in the email to see the barcode in an internet browser instead.
  • We recommend downloading your eGift cards before you leave the house to do your shopping, or whilst connected to WiFi in case of internet connectivity problems in-store.

What happens if I have a smartphone but no data when I’m at the supermarket?
We suggest ordering your eGift card at home when connected to WIFI before you go to the supermarket. Take a screenshot of the eGift card barcode before going to the supermarket as this should still scan ok in-store.

I’m not able to get to the supermarket.
You can forward the supermarket eGift card to someone else to purchase goods on your behalf if you’re not able to get to the supermarket. The eGift card email contains a link to a barcode which can be presented at the till in-store, just like a gift card.

 

Tesco Vouchers FAQs
For full Tesco Vouchers FAQs, please follow this link: https://www.tescoforbusiness.com/faqs/

 

(This webpage last updated Monday, 08 June 2020)