Free student meals

Free student meals are now offered in Further Education to support students who are living with a parent or carer in receipt of certain income based benefits.

To be eligible for free student meals the student must be aged 16-18 and enrolled on a full time course such as A Levels, Entry, Level 1, Level 2 or Level 3 vocational courses. This excludes SC/HC coded courses, HND/HNC courses and Level 5 courses.

Students aged 19 or over are only eligible to receive a free meal if they are continuing on a study programme they began aged 16 to 18 (‘19+ continuers’) or have an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP). These two groups of aged 19 plus students can receive a free meal while they continue to attend education (in the case of a 19+ continuer, this must be the same programme they started before they turned 19), if their eligibility continues.

Hampshire County Council Catering Services (HC3S) has an online service so parents can check their eligibility for Free Student Meals themselves. This self-service option is available at:

For the online service, all you need to do is enter your name, national insurance number or asylum number, your address and your child’s details. Press ‘submit’ and you will find out if you are eligible.

If your result comes back ‘found’, this means your child is eligible for free student meals and the system will inform the College.

Income Support
Letter dated from 1 April 2019 stating you currently receive this benefit.

Job Seekers Allowance (income based)
All pages of your notification, dated from 1 April 2019.

Employment Support Allowance (income related)
All pages of your notification dated from 1 April 2019.

Pension Credit (Guarantee element)
All pages of your State Pension Credit (guarantee element) issued by the Pension Service and dated from 1 April 2019.

Child Tax Credit
All pages of your Tax Credit Award Notice for April 2019 to April 2020 showing that you receive only Child Tax (not Working Tax Credit) and have an annual gross income of no more than £16,190.

Support under part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
Letter dated from April 2019 evidencing this support.

Universal Credit
Your last 3 most recent monthly Award Statements which can be printed from your online account. Please print the full breakdown of your monthly payments which show how your Universal Credit payment was calculated. Your net earned income must not exceed £7,400.

You can either apply online via the Student Meal Eligibility Checker: or you can complete the Student Travel & Support Application form and return it to Student Travel & Support, HSDC, South Downs Campus, College Waterlooville, Hants, PO7 8AA with supporting proof of benefit.

If you do not have your current proof of benefit, please continue to complete the application form and supply the proof at a later date.  This will enable the College to begin processing your application form.

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