§ Mr. Tony Banks
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if Her Majesty's Government plans to introduce legislation which will affect the discretionary power of local authorities to provide free or reduced cost school meals.
§ Mr. Dunn
Under the proposals in the Social Security Green Paper pupils with parents on income support (which would succeed supplementary benefit) would continue to be entitled to free school meals, but pupils with parents on family credit (which would succeed family income supplement) would not be entitled to free school meals and the rates of family credit would be enhanced instead.
Local education authorities would still be able to charge whatever price they liked for an item, subject to the same constraints as now, but they would not be empowered as they are now to charge a differentially lower price for the same item to a particular group or category of pupils, nor to remit the whole price, other than to pupils of parents on income support.