FSM - Recommendations for Local Authorities 1 Embed free school

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					FSM - Recommendations for Local Authorities

 1 Embed free school meal take-up (alongside general take-up) into the Local
    Authorities School Improvement Action Plans and other relevant local
    authority documents and frameworks

 2 Share ideas, research and knowledge learnt with other local authorities, and
    look to other local authorities both neighbouring local authorities and those
    that have ‘championed’ the Free School Meals agenda for support advice
    and inspiration

 3 Explore and develop partnerships with other local authorities, looking at
    existing local or regional forums to specifically address Free School Meal
    registration and take-up

 4 Explore and develop partnerships with other stakeholders across the local
    authority, for example Healthy Schools team, Primary Care Trust health
    promotion and public health colleagues; Local Government Association
    (LGA), Head Teacher Forums etc, to increase free school meal registration
    and take-up

 5 Review your local authorities existing methods of registration for Free School
    Meals, identifying and considering barriers and constraints; and make
    specific proposals and recommendations for change across the local

 6 Approach other directorates and teams within your local authority, for
    example, Revenue and Benefits to develop a link between departments in
    terms of identifying those parents whose children are eligible for Free School
    Meals and then ensuring their registration

 7 Consider the use of the Online Free School Meals Hub which supports local
    authorities in streamlining the Free School Meals registration process

 8 Continue to publicise Free School Meals to parents, carers and pupils and
    utilise the DSCF ‘FSM hub’ to process referrals

 9 Review the design of Free School Meals forms and literature and where
    appropriate redesign ensuring all schools are notified about the change.
    Please note Schools and ‘Partners’ signed up to the Million Meals Campaign
    ( can access a range of resources
    including Free School Meals posters and materials

 10 Ensure ‘easy to access’ information is available and updated on both the
    local authority and school meals service websites to help parents, pupils
    and schools make informed choices regarding Free School Meals

 11 Review both the impact of stigma and free school meal take-up across
    individual schools within the Local Authority and identify any actions /
    activities that can be undertaken by the school or local authority to either
    eliminate or mitigate against it
12 Identify key individuals, including parents and pupils, and hold a series of
   focus groups and workshops to identify barriers to Free School Meal
   registration and take-up and suggest ideas to encourage increased take-up
   and make recommendations for change

13 Survey both pupils and parents at a local level to ascertain discover why
   pupils eligible for free school meals entitlement are not registering and why
   those that have registered fail to take up their free school meal. Use the
   results of the survey within the local authorities overall School Improvement
   Action Plans

14 Consider a range of support, advice and interventions the local authority and
   the school meals service can offer to individual schools to address low take-
   up of Free School Meals

15 Consider offering targeted support to a small number of schools within the
   local authority to increase registration and take-up of school meals. Ensure
   key findings and recommendations are disseminated across the local
   authority, partner organisations and to all schools across the local authority

16 Undertake either an internal review or commission independent external
   review, of the marketing and promotion of Free School Meals within the local
   authority. Fully consider the different strategies needed for both primary and
   secondary schools pupils

17 Based on a review of local authorities marketing and promotion of free
   school meals, consider developing a marketing pack that a wide range of
   teams within the authority can use at events, including parents evenings,
   school forums, school councils etc, that promote Free School Meals
   registration and take-up (

18 Work towards ensuring all schools use all their delegated Free School Meals
   budget on the school meals service; addressing the School Forum and
   ensuring school Governors are fully apprised of the role they can play to
   raise the profile of free school meals. ‘Partners’ signed up to the Million
   Meals campaign can access the School Governors Guide

19 Increase awareness of the improved quality of schools meals ensuring Free
   School Meals entitlement covers the cost of a full meal

20 Working with your Information Management colleagues, access and review
   regular and up-to-date Free School Meals data for all schools across the
   local authority. Reviewing the data, consider and interpret the variances in
   take-up and measure the impact of interventions


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