We have been working with Telford and Wrekin Council, since school closures, to try and provide a FSM to every child who is entitled to receive one each day. This has been a huge undertaking and very challenging, we have worked hard to support this but we are very aware that not all our families have actually received a meal. For the two weeks before the Easter break the Council were making and delivering packed lunches to households across Telford. Where this did not happen the Council has assured us they would deliver vouchers so parents could purchase food. Again, we are concerned that many families have not received these but it is very difficult for us to track as we are not managing this.
The Government made the decision before the Easter break that they would not fund FSM during the two week holiday period but I took the decision, as a Trust to support our families, that we would provide vouchers to all our families in our schools who were entitled to FSMs. We placed an order with the Council for vouchers and hoped these would be sent out to you. Unfortunately, the government reversed its decision over the first weekend of the holiday and the system for vouchers nationally has just not coped with the demand. You may receive a voucher this week but we cannot guarantee this at this stage.
In order to support you we are opening up the coffee shop at HLC, which is in the community entrance on Crescent Road, until the end of this week from 11.30-12.30 where you can come, from which ever school your child attends to order and have freshly made a packed lunch free of charge. Please do not hesitate to use this service and we will have social distancing measures in place so we do not put anyone at risk.
From Monday 20th April we are told the Governments’ voucher scheme will be in place, we can see on the national computer system (Edenred) that are vouchers are “pending” and you should receive a voucher, per week, of £15.00 until schools reopen. We have already been in touch with you about this to set up the best method for your family to access these vouchers. We are concerned that this system may not be fully working next week due to the sheer volume of numbers but we will keep you informed. Please contact your individual school, next week, if you have not received your voucher as we will have admin staff in to support this.
I apologise that you may not have received your entitlement but we have been and continue to work hard on this to ensure the system works for you.
Dr. Gill Eatough