Spring Hardship Payment

The Spring Hardship Payment is a Scottish Government grant which will see a payment of £100 made to all children who receive free meals in a school or early learning and childcare setting due to household low income or qualifying benefits.

Loudhailer announcement

Who will receive the payment?

  • Children in P4-S6 who receive free school meals will be eligible for the payment.
  • Children in P1-P3 currently receive universal free school meals. The payment will only be made to those children in P1-P3 who are eligible due to low income or qualifying benefits. So not all P1-P3 children will receive the payment.
  • Younger children in an early learning and childcare setting who receive free meals due to low income or qualifying benefits will also receive the payment.

Is the payment per family or per child?

  • A payment of £100 will be made for each eligible child in the household.

How will the payment be made?

  • Payment will be made automatically for all eligible children who previously received the Winter Hardship Payment and or those eligible who were in receipt of Direct payment in recompense for missed free meals. There is no need to reapply. We will use the payment details we currently hold for you. 
  • If your payment details have changed since you received your Winter Hardship Payment/payment in recompense of missed free meals you must tell us as soon as possible using this form:

Free School Meals Application form
 

When will I receive the payment?

  • All eligible children who previously received the Winter Hardship Payment or who have applied for and been awarded free school meals by 22 March 2021, will receive the payment on Friday 26 March 2021.  We will use the bank details we currently hold for you.
  • All eligible children who apply for and are awarded free school meals after 22 March 2021 will receive the payment by Friday 9 April 2021.

I have not applied for free school meals but I think I qualify. Will I get the payment?

  • To qualify for the Spring Hardship Payment your application for free school meals must be submitted by the end of school term on Friday 26 March.
  • New applications can be made online using our existing Clothing Grant and Free School Meals application form.

Free School Meals Application form
 

  • If you apply before 26 March 2021 and qualify, you will be awarded free school meals and will receive  £100 payment as soon as possible after application.
  • If you apply after 26 March 2021 and qualify, you will be awarded free school meals but will not be eligible for the £100 payment.

My child meets the eligibility criteria for children in early learning, do I need to apply?

  • If you previously received the direct payment in recompense for missed free meals (from January 2021) then you do not need to re-apply.  If you are eligible, your payment will be made automatically on Friday 26 March.
  • If you did not receive direct payment in recompense for missed free meals but feel you qualify for the Spring Hardship Payment you can make a new application using our online application form:

Free School Meals Application form
 

The application is quick and easy to complete, you will need your national insurance number and bank account details.

You may be asked to provide proof of your eligibility. For example, if you are in receipt of Universal Credit you will need to provide a screenshot of your most recent assessment period showing your full award. If you receive Child Tax Credit, you will need to provide a copy of your Tax Credit Letter of Award when you apply.

  • If your application is approved before 22 March your payment will be made on Friday 26 March.
  • If your application is approved after 22 March your payment will be made by early April.

What is the deadline for applications?

  • To qualify for the £100 payment all applications must be submitted by the end of school term on Friday 26 March 2021.