Guidance to admonition accommodate chargeless commons to disadvantaged 16 to 18 year old acceptance in added apprenticeship adjourned institutions.
This adviser is authoritative admonition from Apprenticeship and Skills Allotment Agency (ESFA). This admonition is non-statutory, and is advised to admonition added apprenticeship (FE) adjourned academy acquire their obligation to accommodate chargeless commons to disadvantaged students.
The 1996 Apprenticeship Act requires maintained academy and academy sixth forms to accommodate chargeless commons to disadvantaged acceptance who are age-old over 16. In the 2014 to 2015 bookish year this claim was continued to disadvantaged acceptance afterward FE courses at the ambit of FE adjourned institutions. Allotment Agreements abode a acknowledged assignment on institutions to accede with this requirement.
Institutions allegation accomplish a chargeless meal accessible for all acceptable acceptance for anniversary day the apprentice attends their abstraction programme, area this is appropriate.
Institutions acquire allotment at a bulk agnate to £2.41 per apprentice per meal.
Students age-old over 19 who are continuing on the aforementioned abstraction programme (19 continuers) they started afore they angry 19 or who acquire an Apprenticeship Health and Care Plan (EHCP) are acceptable for a chargeless meal area they accommodated the criteria.
Where institutions acquire both a chargeless commons in added apprenticeship and a 16 to 19 Bursary Armamentarium arbitrary bursary allocation, they may use the allotment as a distinct allocation.
For the 2018 to 2019 bookish year, the annual of acceptable allowances for chargeless commons has been amended. From 1 April 2018, Accepted Acclaim will acquire an assets beginning (a best net acceptable assets of £7,400).
All acceptance already accepting chargeless commons on or afterwards 1 April 2018 abide to be acceptable to acquire chargeless commons whilst Accepted Acclaim continues to cycle out. This aegis applies to acceptance who were acceptable for chargeless schools commons (FSM) above-mentioned to affective into added apprenticeship provision. Institutions should abide to accommodate these acceptance with chargeless commons until the end of the Accepted Acclaim rollout period.
Once Accepted Acclaim is absolutely formed out any acceptance accepting chargeless commons will abide to be acceptable to acquire them until they complete their 16 to 19 adjourned education. This applies to any acceptance age-old 19 who are continuing acceptance or who acquire EHCPs.
Any apprentice who becomes acceptable for chargeless commons afterwards the net acceptable assets archetype is alien but afore Accepted Acclaim is absolutely formed out (in March 2023) will additionally abide to be acceptable alike if they afterwards become disqualified due to changes in their affairs during this period. Institutions should abide to accommodate these acceptance with chargeless commons until the end of the rollout aeon and until they complete their 16 to 19 adjourned education. We acquire included an broadcast area on transitional protection in this guide.
Students allegation be enrolled in added apprenticeship accouterment adjourned via ESFA to be acceptable for a chargeless meal. Acceptable institutions are:
To be acceptable to acquire a chargeless meal in the 2018 to 2019 bookish year a apprentice allegation be age-old 16 or over but beneath 19 on 31 August 2018.
Students age-old 19 or over are alone acceptable to acquire a chargeless meal if they are continuing on a abstraction programme they began age-old 16 to 18 (‘19 continuers’) or acquire an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP).
These 2 groups of age-old 19 added acceptance can acquire a chargeless meal while they abide to appear apprenticeship (in the case of a 19 continuer, this allegation be the aforementioned programme they started afore they angry 19), as continued as their accommodation continues.
The afterward groups of acceptance are not acceptable for chargeless commons in added education:
Free commons are targeted at disadvantaged students. Chargeless commons in added apprenticeship defines disadvantage as acceptance actuality in cancellation of, or accepting parents who are in cancellation of, one or added of the afterward benefits:
A apprentice is alone acceptable to acquire a chargeless meal aback they, or a amenable developed on their behalf, acquire fabricated a acknowledged appliance to the academy area they are enrolled.
Feedback from institutions has adumbrated that there is some abashing about Alive Tax Acclaim and whether accouchement from families in cancellation of it are acceptable for chargeless meals. Alive Tax Acclaim is not a condoning annual for chargeless meals, and a parent/student in cancellation of Alive Tax Acclaim alone are not advantaged to a chargeless meal. A ancestor or apprentice allegation be in cancellation of one of the condoning allowances set out aloft to be eligible. Condoning allowances accommodate the Alive Tax Acclaim run on which is paid for four weeks afterwards you stop condoning for Alive Tax Credit.
The Department for Apprenticeship has been alive carefully with the Department for Assignment & Pensions, added government departments and absorbed parties to authorize new belief for chargeless entitlements to chargeless commons as the rollout of Accepted Acclaim continues.
From 1 April 2018, any apprentice who is in cancellation of, or has parents who are in cancellation of, Accepted Acclaim allegation acquire a net acceptable anniversary assets of no added than £7,400 in acclimation to be acceptable for chargeless meals. This change will administer from the 2018 to 2019 bookish year. Any added changes or clarifications about Accepted Acclaim and chargeless commons will be accepted via an amend to this guide.
Students allegation additionally amuse the address belief set out in ESFA Allotment acclimation admonition for the 2018 to 2019 bookish year.
Institutions are amenable for assessing applications for chargeless meals. All acceptance applying for a chargeless meal for the aboriginal time in the 2018 to 2019 bookish year allegation abide an appliance (either by the student, or by a amenable developed on their behalf) to the academy area they are enrolled. Some institutions may use a cardboard appliance form, others may use an on-line appliance form.
Institutions will be acquainted that the Department for Apprenticeship provides an cyberbanking Accommodation Blockage Arrangement (ECS) that enables bounded authorities to ysis chargeless academy meal (FSM) accommodation on annual of institutions. It is important that institutions and bounded authorities acquire that the acknowledged aperture (section 110 of the Apprenticeship Act 2005) that enables the Department to admission annual admonition captivated by DWP and HRMC for blockage accommodation is bound to FSM. Admonition from the ECS cannot currently be acclimated to ysis alms for chargeless commons for post-16 students.
As allotment of the application, institutions allegation ask the apprentice (or their parent/guardian) to accommodate affirmation of the accolade of the condoning benefits. This ability be an accolade apprehension or letter from the Department of Assignment and Pensions (DWP) or HMRC. Institutions may appetite to accede appliance a accumulated appliance anatomy and action for chargeless commons and the 16 to 19 Bursary Fund.
For new applicants, institutions allegation verify the accommodation of students, or their parents, who are in cancellation of Accepted Credit, institutions will allegation to ask for a archetype of their Accepted Acclaim accolade apprehension which includes detail of their annual earnings. Institutions will allegation to appraise the admonition accustomed to admission an authentic proxy of the individual’s accepted acceptable anniversary income.
Institutions should ysis accommodation appliance the afterward three-step process:
A chiral ysis will be adapted to actuate accommodation for those acceptance or their parents who are self-employed and in cancellation of Accepted Credit. Parents will allegation to accommodate affirmation that:
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The diagram that follows additionally shows the appraisal process:
The addition of new accommodation belief beneath Accepted Acclaim from 1 April 2018 will aftereffect in some households acceptable acceptable for chargeless commons and others falling alfresco of the accommodation criteria. The Department for Apprenticeship is introducing capricious aegis align to accommodate authoritativeness for families and to ensure that they do not acquaintance a abrupt accident of chargeless meals.
The aegis align are advised to be as aboveboard as accessible for institutions to implement. It will administer as follows:
Institutions do not allegation to backpack out any added accommodation checks for these adequate families during this period. They may ambition to agenda the acceptance as ‘protected’ in their chargeless commons auditable records.
Institutions should seek to yze acceptance who are acceptable to acquire chargeless commons beneath the capricious aegis by speaking to the student’s antecedent academy or their bounded ascendancy (in the case of FSM) or to their antecedent added apprenticeship adjourned academy (in the case of chargeless commons in added education). The admonition may additionally be accessible on the Common Transfer book area institutions acquire active up to the Department’s for Education’s school-to-school system, although the Department recognises this may not be adapted for all added apprenticeship adjourned institutions. The Department is additionally exploring options for accouterment actual chargeless academy commons (FSM) admonition to admonition institutions yze acceptance who are adequate and should abide to acquire a chargeless meal.
Where institutions are clumsy to verify antecedent accommodation for chargeless commons appliance the approaches above, institutions may ambition to accede gluttonous affirmation from the student/their parent, for example, by requesting a archetype of antecedent alms belletrist etc.
A apprentice who has not ahead claimed chargeless commons is alone acceptable to acquire one aback they, or a amenable developed on their behalf, acquire fabricated a acknowledged appliance to the academy area they are enrolled. Already Accepted Acclaim is absolutely formed out, any acceptance accepting chargeless commons who no best accommodated the accommodation belief at that point (because they are earning aloft the threshold) will abide to acquire aegis until they complete their 16 to 19 adjourned education. 19 continuers and acceptance age-old 19 and over with EHCPs will abide to acquire aegis until the end of their accepted programme of study.
Student who administer afterwards 1 April 2018 and who acquire domiciliary balance aloft the beginning will not be acceptable for chargeless meals.
Where possible, ESFA has based 2018 to 2019 bookish year chargeless commons allotment for added apprenticeship institutions on their 2016 to 2017 abounding bookish year abstracts and their adjourned apprentice cardinal for the 2018 to 2019 bookish year. ESFA has acclimated the cardinal of acceptance adjourned as acceptable for, and in cancellation of, chargeless commons in the 2016 to 2017 bookish year as a allotment of the absolute cardinal of appear acceptance age-old 16 to 19 in that year. This establishes the cardinal of acceptance we ability ytic apprehend to be acceptable for chargeless commons abutment in the 2018 to 2019 bookish year.
If 2016 to 2017 abounding bookish year admonition is not available, ESFA will use another approaches to accomplish the allocation and explain the adding to the institution. ESFA acerb advises institutions to accomplish abstracts allotment for the cardinal of acceptance adjourned as acceptable for, and in cancellation of, chargeless commons on an advancing basis.
ESFA apportions the cardinal of fundable chargeless commons acceptance beyond the allotment bands, appliance the aforementioned alignment as for boilerplate allocations. Band 5, Band 4 and Band 1 FTEs are full-time students. Band 3 and Band 2 are part-time students. Two allotment ante apply, one for full-time acceptance and one for part-time students, agnate to £2.41 per apprentice per meal.
As in antecedent years, ESFA has fabricated an acclimation for celebrated bifold allotment amid chargeless commons and the 16 to 19 Bursary Fund. ESFA calculates anniversary institution’s allotment (percentage) of the absolute cardinal of acceptance authentic with chargeless commons who a the 2018 to 2019 chargeless commons allocations. This allotment is acclimated to annual the bulk to be subtracted from anniversary institution’s arbitrary bursary allocation.
Further admonition about the allocations alignment is set out in ESFA allotment statements (issued to institutions in February to March 2018).
ESFA will pay chargeless commons allocations to institutions in 2 parts: about two-thirds in August and one third in April. The aboriginal acquittal for acceptable academies is September, absorption that this is about the date for aboriginal payments to academies.
If any academy accustomed an allocation of chargeless commons allotment determines they do not acquire acceptable students, they should acquaintance ESFA to acknowledgment their allocation.
Institutions are acceptable to use up to 5% of their allocation for authoritative costs.
Institutions that are in ambit for both the 16 to 19 Bursary Armamentarium and chargeless commons in added apprenticeship schemes are acceptable to use up to 5% of the accumulated allocation for administration. Institutions allegation ensure they do not booty a sum that is greater than 5% of the distinct allocation total.
ESFA permits institutions to backpack unspent funds over to the aing bookish year.Institutions allegation ensure that any unspent funds they backpack advanced abide to be acclimated to abutment students. Funds that are agitated advanced cannot be added to accepted academy funds.
Institutions accustomed a distinct all-embracing allocation in the antecedent bookish year that included allotment for both chargeless commons and arbitrary bursary can backpack advanced funds from both schemes. The allotment can be acclimated for either chargeless commons or arbitrary bursary payments in the new bookish year (2018 to 2019).
Institutions allegation absolutely utilise any unspent funds for either arbitrary bursary or chargeless commons afore appliance their new bookish year allocation.
ESFA reminds institutions that arbitrary bursary and/or chargeless commons allotment cannot be agitated advanced for added than one year. Institutions allegation acquaintance ESFA to align to acknowledgment any unspent funds they authority from any year above-mentioned to 2017 to 2018.
Institutions allegation accomplish accouterment for chargeless commons to acceptable acceptance (those who are in cancellation of the condoning allowances and who accomplish a acknowledged appliance for chargeless meals) for anniversary day the apprentice attends their abstraction programme, area this is appropriate.
For example, if a apprentice attends for 5 canicule a week, 9am to 3pm, for allotment of their course, the academy should accommodate 5 chargeless meals. If a apprentice has 2 canicule a anniversary aback they alone appear from 9am to 10am, again the academy does not acquire to accommodate commons on those days.
Institutions are amenable for auspicious and acknowledging acceptance in authoritative advantageous aliment choices. Many caterers will be able to admonish on acceptable advantageous options to action students. Institutions should additionally action hot aliment options area practical.
Institutions should accommodate a meal chargeless of allegation to acceptable students, or armamentarium the chargeless meal via an cyberbanking acclaim or agenda that can be adored on-site or off-site area institutions acquire align with adjacent aliment outlets. Cyberbanking credits and vouchers allegation be annual a minimum bulk of £2.41.
If an academy determines it is all-important to enhance the £2.41 chargeless commons allotment rate, in added words, to accommodate a meal with a greater value, from the distinct allotment allocation or added sources, they acquire acumen to do so.Institutions allegation accede the bulk for money and acumen of an accessory to the £2.41 bulk and allegation be able to absolve this at audit, decidedly if they acquire to accomplish a cogent aberration from this amount.
The bulk of commons is sometimes included as allotment of the amalgamation of abutment for High Needs Acceptance that is agreed with bounded authorities. In these instances, institutions should accede the affair of abeyant bifold allotment for commons aback assessing the allegation to support. This ability be by deducting the adapted bulk of allotment from the absolute costs of the amalgamation for those acceptance who will be acceptable for a chargeless meal, enabling bounded authorities to use those funds elsewhere.
The majority of acceptance will crave a chargeless meal at lunchtime to fit in with accepted study/attendance patterns. However, institutions may awfully acquire to accomplish accouterment for a chargeless meal at an another time, for example, a breakfast, depending on the abstraction arrangement of alone students.
Institutions allegation accomplish chargeless commons accouterment for acceptance on canicule aback they are off-site as allotment of their abstraction programme, for instance accessory a assignment adjustment or assignment experience. Wherever possible, institutions should accommodate the apprentice with a agenda they can use at adjacent aliment outlets or align with the assignment adjustment or assignment acquaintance provider to accommodate a meal.
ESFA expects that a meal, agenda or acclaim will be provided to acceptable students. However, this may not be applied in some situations and institutions are acceptable to accomplish banknote payments to acceptance in the afterward aberrant circumstances:
If institutions yze authentic and aberrant affairs that abatement alfresco these parameters, they acquire acumen to accomplish banknote payments if they acquire that declining to do so will anticipate an acceptable apprentice from actuality provided with a meal. Institutions allegation ensure they almanac any such decisions as allotment of their auditable records.
Institutions are best placed to accomplish decisions in the case of acceptance who acquire adapted comestible requirements, demography into annual bounded circumstances. Institutions are accepted to accomplish reasonable adjustments for acceptance with these requirements.
The School Aliment Plan’s UIFSM toolkit was developed to admonition schools apparatus accepted chargeless academy commons for baby pupils, but it contains admonition on how to baby for pupils with adapted comestible requirements, which may be accessible to institutions.
ESFA removed the arena fence amid the chargeless commons in added apprenticeship allocation and the 16 to 19 Bursary Armamentarium arbitrary bursary allocation in the 2016 to 2017 bookish year. This adaptability charcoal in place. Institutions allegation administer the distinct allocation appropriately to ensure all acceptance acceptable for a chargeless meal acquire one in band with this guide.
Prior to the addition of added allotment for chargeless meals, institutions had authentic the bulk of commons for acceptance who bare them from arbitrary bursaries. ESFA adjusts arbitrary allocations to booty annual of this bifold allotment for those institutions additionally in cancellation of an allocation for chargeless meals.
Institutions acquire acumen to administer the distinct allocation as they adjudge best adapted to best accommodate abutment to acceptable acceptance for both schemes. Chargeless commons in added apprenticeship charcoal an alms and institutions allegation administer the distinct allocation appropriately to ensure that all acceptance advantaged to a chargeless meal are provided with one.
If an academy determines it is all-important to enhance the £2.41 chargeless commons allotment bulk and accommodate a meal with a greater value, whether from their distinct allocation or added sources, they acquire the acumen to do so. However, area institutions acquire to do this, they allegation ensure that allotment for arbitrary bursaries continues to accommodate acceptable admonition to acceptance adverse the ambit of barriers to accord and should not enhance chargeless commons allotment to the damage of added needs.
Institutions can accord added abutment to acceptance acceptable for a chargeless meal from the 16 to 19 Bursary Fund, if the academy assesses they accommodated the belief for bursary for accessible groups or the arbitrary bursary.
Institutions should ensure they accede the accouterment of a chargeless meal, or the allotment provided to the apprentice for the chargeless meal, aback they appraise their all-embracing allegation for support.
Institutions are amenable for ensuring acceptance are acquainted of the accommodation belief for chargeless meals. They should additionally animate acceptance who may accommodated the belief to accomplish an appliance for a chargeless meal.
Institutions should acutely set out their chargeless meal accouterment for acceptance and parents. This ability be by publishing a annual on their website, accouterment admonition at enrolment days, sending belletrist home to parents, etc. Template forms are accessible on gov.uk for institutions to use.
Students do bigger in their studies aback they acquire admission to proper, regular, comestible meals. ESFA encourages institutions to abutment acceptance to accomplish advantageous aliment choices by adopting acquaintance of accordant admonition and guidance.
Individualised Learner Almanac (ILR)
Institutions allegation complete the chargeless meal acreage in the ILR to accommodate admonition on the cardinal of adolescent bodies acceptable for chargeless meals. This is cipher FME2.
Institutions allegation ensure they alone almanac acceptance who are acceptable and acquire taken up the chargeless meal in the chargeless meal field.
Students who acquire allotment for commons from the arbitrary 16 to 19 Bursary Armamentarium allegation not be recorded in the chargeless commons acreage nor should acceptance who acquire Chargeless Academy Commons (FSM) (for example, 4 to 15 year-olds). FSM acceptance should be appear in the abstracted FSM field.
The ILR states that cipher FME2 should be acclimated if the apprentice is acceptable for, and has taken up, chargeless commons at any point during the bookish year. If the apprentice stops demography chargeless commons FME2 should be retained and not removed until the alpha of the afterward bookish year. Similarly, if a apprentice becomes disqualified during the year, the capricious protections beggarly that FME2 should be retained until the student’s programme of abstraction ends.
This cipher should be recorded for acceptable acceptance who are ESFA adjourned acceptance age-old 16 or over and beneath 19, 19 to 24 year-old acceptance who are accountable to an EHCP, ESF adjourned acceptance age-old amid 16 and 18 and 19 continuers.
Institutions that do not complete the ILR but instead complete the Academy Census should complete the 2 chargeless academy commons fields.
Free commons in added apprenticeship is accountable to accustomed affirmation align for 16 to 19 apprenticeship and training.
Institutions allegation advance authentic and up to date annal that affirmation which acceptance acquire chargeless commons funding; affirm apprentice accommodation for funding, including area capricious protections apply, and authenticate adapted use of funds, including the account for any accessory to the £2.41 chargeless commons rate.
Institutions are amenable for chief what affirmation they acquire for chargeless commons and how contempo it is. However, they allegation ensure they can affirmation that alone acceptance who accommodated the accommodation belief for chargeless commons in anniversary bookish year acquire them. Area institutions acquire acclimated their acumen to accomplish banknote payments that are alfresco the defined belief set out in this document, they allegation ensure these are recorded.
Institutions should agenda that, afterward an audit, ESFA ability balance allotment area chargeless commons payments are begin to acquire been fabricated to disqualified students.
The Children’s Aliment Trust has produced guidance for schools that may be accessible for chargeless commons in added education. The Chargeless Academy Commons Matter Toolkit, and A quick adviser to chargeless academy commons are accessible on the Trust’s website.
Information about advantageous eating, including recipes, is accessible at Change4Life and NHS.
Published 22 March 2018 Last adapted 13 September 2018 show all updates
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