Paying for school meals

How much are school meals?

In the majority of Bradford district primary schools the current pupil price for a two course school meal, including a main course item with sides and a dessert is £2.20.

In secondary schools, students can pay for items individually, or take advantage of the set meals and meal deals. The standard price for these meal packages is typically £2.70, though this can vary from school to school, and for this this you will typically get a main course item with sides and a dessert or drink.

We hope you agree that for a tasty and nutritious 2 course meal, these prices are great value.

How to pay for school meals

ParentPay online payment system

At a growing number of schools, we use the ParentPay system, which enables parents to pay online for school meals. This provides parents/carers with a convenient, safe and verifiable way of paying for school meals, with your ParentPay account giving access to a detailed breakdown of account transactions and credits.

We also operate cashless systems at some school which means that cash is not accepted. All payments have to be made using one of two methods, depending on the type of system operating at the school:

  • Card System: Here each student and staff member receives their own unique card, which also has the student’s photograph put onto their own card. This card can then be used to check their balance, add money, and pay for food and drinks. 
  • Biometric System: On occasion students may misplace their cards, but the handy thing about this system is that it works using finger recognition.
    Students and staff have one of their fingers scanned and this is loaded onto the computer system that controls our food service payments. So it’s by using their finger that they access and credit their account, and make payments for food.

Loading money onto the account

To use either the cashless card or biometric systems the card or account needs to be credited with money. There are 2 ways in which this can be done:

  • Cash: Reval machines in schools will accept cash. Using either their card or their finger (depending on the system), students can load money onto their card / account by following simple on screen instructions on the Reval machine. 
  • Cheque: The advantage of paying for your child’s lunches by cheque is that the money can only be used to buy food and drink. Cheques, made payable to Bradford Council, can be brought to the dining area. The value of the cheque will be credited to the card or account with immediate effect. (Please note. When paying by cheque, the minimum is £15)

What if my child is getting Free School Meals?

For students who are entitled to Free School Meals, their daily allowance is automatically credited to their card / account each day. Students can top this up with additional money if they want to. What’s more, cards credited with Free School Meals look just the same as any other card.

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