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School Lunches

Our school day includes lunchtime provision and every child at Hartford Infant School is entitled to a free school lunch, known as Universal Infant Free School Meals (UIFSM). For further information on UFISM click here.

We ask is that parents and children look carefully at the menu (see the panel at the side of this page) or the yellow banana outside the office, to ensure they want to eat the meal being served on a particular day. If the child does not like or want that meal then they may bring in their own healthy packed lunch for that day. Please see below for more information. Children with packed lunches can still eat with their friends who are having a UIFSM.

Once your child leaves Hartford Infant School they will not automatically receive Free School Meals. However, they may be eligible for free school meals if you receive any of the following benefits:- Income support, Income-based jobseekers’ allowance, Income-related employment and support allowance, Child tax credit, provided that you are not also entitled to working tax credit and have an annual gross income of £16,190 or less, if you are supported under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999, guarantee element of State Pension Credit, Working Tax Credit during the four-week period immediately after your employment finishes or after you start working fewer hours per week or Universal Credit with an annual net earned income of no more than £7400 (from 1st April 2018).

If you are entitled to these please apply now regardless of the fact your child receives a free meal. If you are entitled to Free School Meals due to benefits or income, the School will also receive additional money to help support you and your child. Please visit our Pupil Premium page or more information.

To apply go to

Our caterers

Our current catering company is Hertfordshire Catering Ltd.

HCL is an award-winning specialist caterer with a foundation in the education sector. They provide quality services to academies, colleges and schools. They are passionate about providing fresh, local and seasonal food to schools; improving the school meals service and making lunchtime an integral part of the whole school experience.

They endeavour to provide dishes that are not only popular with students but will also comply with healthy eating standards and guidelines. Your child will have brought a leaflet home with them containing important information. 

Currently your child will need to choose what they are eating and let their teacher know during registeration in the morning. They are then given a coloured band to wear to collect their lunch. They will not be able to change their minds once the order is in, as our cook now has to prepare meals to order on the actual numbers. It is vitial the children give the correct option. There will not be any spare meals for those who say they are packed lunch and are in fact having a hot lunch.

Eventually you as parents will chose for the children in advance via a website once it is up and running the week before, and that is then automatically sent straight to our kitchen.

If your child has food allergies or intolerances you MUST supply this information via:

It is the responsibility of parents and carers to inform the caterers. but it must also be on medical evidence from  a doctor or hospital.  

Please see their current menu in the side panel of this page.

Packed Lunch

If you decide to provide a packed lunch, please read our healthy eating guidance and packed lunch checklist, which are also available to download in the side panel. Research shows that eating a healthy school lunch can positively affect children’s behaviour in the classroom.

As you will be aware there is increasing concern about rising rates of obesity and health-related problems in children. As a school, it is part of our responsibility to help children learn how to eat healthily and, as such, we encourage you to follow to the healthy eating guidelines provided to help you make informed choices for your child’s packed lunch. If you include something that requires cutlery, for example a yoghurt, please also supply a spoon. Thank you in advance for your cooperatio with this.

There are a few rules we ask everyone to follow – no fizzy drinks, no hot food, no sweets and no chocolates. Because more and more children have nut allergies we also ask parents to avoid giving their children peanut butter or other food items containing nuts to help us keep a safe environment for all our children.

Water is always provided at the dining tables, so providing an additional healthy drink is optional.

All children eat in the school’s dining room and we believe it is an important social learning experience and one they will enjoy!

School Fruit and Vegetables

The School Fruit and Vegetable Scheme is part of the 5-A-DAY programme to increase fruit and vegetable consumption. All four to six year old children in Local Authority maintained infant, primary and special schools are entitled to a free piece of fruit or vegetable each school day. Produce currently used in the scheme are : apples, pears, easy peel citrus, bananas, carrots, cocktail tomatoes, sugar snap peas, strawberries, and mini cucumbers. All of our children benefit from this scheme and parents/carers have commented that their children are more happy to eat fruit at home as a result.

Parent lunches

We have regularly invited parents/carers into school to have a meal with their child in the Spring Term.  For more information on how you can join your child for a school meal or packed lunch then contact the school office or look out for the next date in your newletters.

If you need some encouragement…here is what one mother said after joining her son for a school meal:

“I thought I would just send you a quick email to tell you how much I enjoyed my 'school lunch' experience today...I found there was a good choice of healthy foods as well, without being too obvious. The serving and supervision staff were very friendly, helpful and polite. I enjoyed my Lasagne and Fruit Salad very much; it was delicious. I also thought the children from all years to be very well behaved and friendly. Please pass on a message of congratulations to them as it made my visit more pleasurable."

Bringing out the Best in Everyone