Gwynedd primary school dinner payments
A report that will consider the county’s primary school dinner payments will be considered by Gwynedd Council’s Education and Economy Scrutiny Committee next week.
The report refers to recent press coverage that referred to the situation in schools across Wales. The scrutiny report highlights recent developments in online payment systems which means that the process is far more convenient for families and makes it easier for the authority to receive reports about specific debts.
The report also recognises that there are circumstances in some schools where debts have accrued in the past and that work is currently being carried out in Gwynedd to tighten procedures in the process.
Owen Owens, Gwynedd Council Senior Manager Education Resources Service said:
“Over the past year, a new easy to use system has been introduced in all the county’s primary schools which means it is possible for families to pay 24-hours a day. This new convenient process means that parents no longer have to find the exact money to place in an envelope to pay for school dinners every week. This system also allows parents to monitor their payments and to keep track of any payments they need to make.
“As is system is adopted more widely, it will also lift the administrative expectations on schools and enable the authority to be aware immediately if debts for school dinners accrue.
“The scrutiny report draws attention to the fact that work is already being carried out to tighten arrangements in terms of school dinner debts. As an authority, we urge schools to make us aware as soon as possible so that we can try to deal with a problem and when possible offer help to families to repay before significant debts are accrued.
“As the report that will be consider by the Scrutiny Committee notes, we would encourage families who are finding it difficult to pay for school dinners to contact the Council as soon as possible. It may be that the child could be eligible for free school dinners.”
Any parent who would like more information about the free school dinners arrangements can find details on www.gwynedd.llyw.cymru/free-lunch or contact the Council’s benefits team on email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01286 682689 to discuss any questions. To discuss any school dinner debts, parents should contact the Council’s Education Department.