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Free school meals expansion to begin in August

Free school meals will be offered to all P4 pupils in Perth and Kinross Council schools from the start of the new term in August 2021.

They will be joining all pupils from P1 to P3 in the scheme funded by the Scottish Government.

The expansion will also cover all P5 pupils from January 2022, Councillors will be told on Wednesday 23 June, with the Council receiving £775,000 in support for the first phase of the roll-out of free school meals for all primary pupils.

The Council has additionally received £307,000 in school holiday support from the Scottish Government for pupils from P1 to P3 who are in receipt of the school clothing grant and for P4 to S6 pupils who are eligible for free school meals on the basis of low income. Their families will receive direct payments during school holiday periods in 2021-2022, starting with the upcoming summer holiday.

Lifelong Learning Convener, Councillor Caroline Shiers said: "The expansion of free meals at first for all P4 pupils and then their peers in P5 will ensure that even more primary children have the opportunity to get a healthy meal during the school day. We recognise the health and educational benefits of good nutrition and I look forward to this scheme starting in Perth and Kinross in August when schools return after the summer break."

Further information will be made available to parents and carers nearer to the start of the new school year.