Parents are being urged to check whether they should apply for the Best Start Grant School Age Payment as this year’s deadline approaches. 

Applications for the one-off payment of £267.65 per child, which can be used for books, bags, clothes and equipment for school, have to be submitted by midnight on February 28. 

Parents and guardians who get qualifying benefits or tax credits and who have a child born between March 1, 2017 and February 28, 2018 can apply.

The Scottish Government introduced automatic payments for Early Learning Payment and School Age Payment in November 2022.

Those who get Scottish Child Payment will get School Age Payment automatically when their child reaches eligibility and within the School Age Payment window of 1 June to 28 February.

There are some people who don’t qualify for the Scottish Child Payment that could be eligible for School Age Payment, including those who get housing benefit.

There may be others who choose not to apply for Scottish Child Payment who can still apply for School Age Payment. There are also parents and guardians who opted out of automatic payments so they could have more control around when they receive this money. All of these people are being urged to check if they could be due School Age Payment and to apply if they do. 

Ben Macpherson, social security minister, said: “If you have a child in the family aged five, or who turns five this month, then you could be eligible for School Age Payment. 

“We are making it easier than ever to apply but we still ask people to check and make sure they know what they are entitled to.”