School Meals


Q       What is a Cashless System?

A        A Cashless Catering System is a solution, which is purpose designed to meet the ever- evolving needs and demands of the Catering Provision that is required by today’s Schools and Academies. The Trust-e Cashless Solution allows schools to be better able to provide their students with a faster, more efficient and more appealing meal service.

Q       What is Biometric?

A        Biometric is simply a method of identifying an individual person.  We will be using an algorithm based scan, which reads between 50 & 130 points on the finger/thumb.  It is not a fingerprint in any way, shape or form and is of use only in the cashless system.

Q       How does a Biometric System work?

A       The information of a pupil or staff member, who has been biometrically registered, is stored on a secure Biometric Controller within the school, which only our provider, Nationwide Retail Systems Ltd, can access.  Once an account is credited the pupil or staff member places their finger/thumb on the EPOS Terminal, which looks up their account details and allows them to purchase items using only this method of identification.

Q       How does my child register on the Biometric System?

A       Registration days will take place in the first week of your child starting year 7.  During registration your child will place their thumb on a Biometric sensor twice to obtain a matching template, which only takes a few seconds.  If you have chosen to ‘Opt Out’ of this procedure, your child will be presented with a 4 digit PIN Code.

Q      What methods of payment can be used to credit an account?

A      A minimum amount of £5.00 can be credited to an account by any of the following methods.  Once an account has been credited the monies cannot be withdrawn and must be spent on school meals. 

On-Line Payments

We have introduced on-Line payments through ParentPay in partnership with the Cashless Catering System.  To make a payment online please go to to make an electronic payment. You will not incur any charges for using ParentPay.  When a parent uses a credit card, instead of a debit card, the school incurs additional charges, so please bear this in mind when paying for school meals. 


If you wish to pay by PayPoint please let the school know as soon as possible. There will be a charge of £5.00 per PayPoint card that you request. PayPoint cards can be used to top up your child’s account at your local PayPoint stores.  Payments via PayPoint will take up to 48 hours to be credited to the appropriate account.  You can find your local stores by visiting the website below.

Q       How can I check the credit on an account?

A       You can check your balance on your ParentPay account.  Alternatively, there will be a balance checker machine located in the canteen where pupils can check their available credit.

Q      Can I change the daily ‘Spend Limit’?

A       Yes – The daily ‘Spend Limit’ has a default of £7 but this may be changed by written request to the Catering Manager on

Q      What happens if my child’s account is not in credit?

A      If your child does not have enough credit on their account, they need to go to the Finance Office to ask for a lunch voucher. If your child has a lunch voucher please ensure it is repaid the same day by topping up their account through ParentPay.

Q      How do ‘free meal’ entitlements work?

A      The Cashless Catering System will, on a daily basis, automatically allocate the appropriate accounts with the free meal amounts.  Pupils with Free Meal Entitlements remain anonymous at all times as all account types are accessed in the exact same manner regardless as to whether paid for or not.  NB.  Any monies not spent from the daily free meal allocation will not be carried over to the next day.

Q      Can anyone else use my child’s account?

A       No – due to the extensive security on Biometric templates no-one will be able to access your child’s account.  As a secondary precaution a photo image is allocated to each pupil.  If your child is using a 4 digit PIN Code, which someone obtains and attempts to use, the photograph shown on the EPOS Terminal will alert the operator to a fraudulent sale taking place.

Q       Can I request a printed report of my child’s meal intake?

A       Yes – The Cashless Catering System allows numerous reporting facilities, which includes Dietary Habits.

If you feel that you may qualify for Free School Meals, please visit the link on the left for more information.