We are pleased to inform you that cashless catering is used in school. The system incorporates the latest technology and eliminates the need to carry cash throughout the day, thus reducing the risk of loss. It is also biometric so there is no need to carry a card as the system will recognise the thumb/finger of your child at the tills and at the remote payment point. Students will be able to check the balance of their account by going to the remote payment point, which is situated opposite the library in the street. (Please note: fingerprint images are not stored by the system.)

Cash is not accepted at the till points in the canteen.

As well as using this method for school meals we also have a convenient way to pay for school uniform and some trips, using a secure online service called ParentPay. ParentPay offers you the freedom to make payments whenever you like, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You have a secure online account, activated using a unique username and password. If you have more than one child at the school, you can merge their accounts to create one login for all your children. Making a payment is straightforward and ParentPay holds a payment history for you to view at a later date; no card details are stored in any part of the system. As soon as you have activated your account you can make online payments straight away. Given that the school incurs charges of 30p for each debit card transaction and 10p plus 1.5% for each credit card transaction, a minimum payment of £10 will apply. Students will also be able to credit their accounts by paying cash into the remote payment point at school.

There is a daily “spend limit” for students programmed into the system of £4.00. This can be increased or decreased for an individual student by making a written request to Mrs A M Brown in the school finance office. Any credit balances remaining at the end of each term will roll forward to the next academic year. For students leaving the school, parents and students are advised to monitor balances carefully as we will be unable to refund balances of less than £5.00, due to administration costs.

You will receive your unique ParentPay Account activation details during the first two weeks of term. Until this is received students can credit their account via the payment point opposite the library.

Parents who prefer to continue making payments for school meals by cash may register to do so using the PayPoint network. A card will be issued to you to make cash payments at any PayPoint, found at local convenience stores. The first card is free of charge; with any additional or replacement cards charged at £5.00 each. Payment cards take about 2 weeks to arrive. Please contact Mrs A M Brown, finance assistant, via e-mail at or on 01908 520264 Ext 279 if you would like to request this facility. PayPoint payments are recorded by ParentPay and can be seen by logging into your ParentPay account and viewing your payment history online.

For the time being, cash or cheque payments for trips and items of school uniform will still be accepted at the Finance Office.

To enable the school to work within updated Governmental directives (Protection of Freedoms Act 2012), at least one parent must give their written consent to the biometric system being used. If there is no consent the school may have to stop students from using this system and this will affect the smooth running of the restaurant.

Please would you return the slip below to Mrs Lannin indicating your consent, or not, as soon as possible.




What is a biometric/cashless catering system?
  • A biometric system requires an image of your child’s thumb/finger to be taken for recognition purposes. The system works by taking measurements of the fingerprint. They DO NOT capture a complete image. The system uses a mathematical algorithm from the measurements, to identify your child. The numbers cannot be reinterpreted back into a fingerprint image.
How long is the data held for?
  • Once your child leaves school all biometric information is securely removed.
Is the data held in a secure location?
  • All data is held on the school’s secure network. The school network is protected by a high grade firewall system as well as its own security systems.
How is money entered onto the system?
  1. By using ParentPay
  2. By cash at the remote payment station (revaluation station), which will be located opposite the library in the street
  3. By using the PayPoint service, available at local convenience stores
How does the remote payment station work?
  • The student places their thumb/finger on the scanner mounted on the revaluation station which will display the student’s name and current cash balance held within the system. Cash is then inserted into the slot. The student’s account is immediately updated and the balance will appear on the screen. Students are also able to check their current cash balance when purchasing items in the canteen.
How does my child pay for a school meal?
  • The student places their thumb/finger on a scanner at the point of sale. A display will show the server the student’s name and current cash balance held within the system. The server will enter the selected food items into the system from an itemised keyboard while the amount spent and the new cash balance will show on the display.
If we pay for a set number of school meals, can it be spent in one day?
  • No. A daily spend limit of £4.00 will be set, which can be spent across break time and/or lunch. The daily limit can be adjusted by sending a written request to Mrs A M Brown, finance assistant.
What about students entitled to free school meals?
  • The system works in exactly the same way for all students. The amount allocated for the free school meal will be entered into the system daily and will only be accessible at lunch time. The system will allow the required cash amount for each individual student on a daily basis. However, any underspend or missed lunch will not be added to the next day’s balance.

The student can add cash to his or her balance to enable a greater daily spend. Any additional cash can be used for break time snacks as well as lunch time meals.

Will students have problems in using this system?
  • The till points and remote payment machines are simple to use. Some students may find it difficult to control their accounts for the first few weeks but most learn this important life skill very quickly and will enjoy being in control of their account.
When can I log in to my account?
  • Once you have received your activation letter from school with your activation login details you’ll be able to activate your account and start making payments. This letter will be sent to you during the first two weeks of term.
Which cards can I use?
  • ParentPay accepts most MasterCard and Visa credit cards, in addition to Maestro, Switch, Delta, Electron, Solo and Visa debit cards.
Is it safe to make payments on the internet?
  • Yes. ParentPay uses leading technology to process your card transactions securely. All communication with the bank is encrypted and neither ParentPay nor the school have access to your card details.
How can I check that it’s secure?
  • Standard website addresses begin with http:. The address for a secure site will always begin with https. You will also see a padlock at the bottom/top right of the screen on our login page and after you have logged into your account; never enter your card details or personal data on any web page whose address does not start https.
What about our personal information?
  • ParentPay holds a very limited amount of information about you and your child solely for the purpose of administering your account. We do not share or give information to any other organisations. We operate under strict guidelines set out by the Data Protection Act 1998.

ParentPay will NEVER contact you by phone, email or post and ask you to divulge confidential information like passwords or card numbers. If you are ever contacted by someone claiming to be from ParentPay, please contact them immediately on 0845 257 5540.

For more information please visit


What is a PayPoint Card?
  • PayPoint cards are issued to enable parents to make cash payments at any UK retailer displaying the PayPoint sign.
How much do PayPoint Cards cost?
  • Your initial card will be issued free of charge. Any additional or replacement cards will be charged at £5.00.
When will my child’s account be credited?
  • Please allow up to 24 hours for payments to be credited to your child’s account.
Can a PayPoint Card be used to pay for all school items?
  • No. At present PayPoint cards can only be used for lunch money.
Where are the nearest PayPoint stores?
The nearest PaytPoint convenience stores are located at:
One Stop
4 White Horse Drive, Emerson Valley
Milton Keynes, MK4 2AS
Opening times:
Monday – Sunday  07:00 – 22.00
Loughton Village Store
71 London Road, Loughton
Milton Keynes, MK5 8AF
Opening times:
Monday – Saturday  08:00 – 20.00
Sunday  08:00 – 17:00
130 Dunthorne Way, Grange Farm
Milton Keynes, MK8 0LW
Opening times:
Monday – Saturday  07:00 – 22:00
Sunday  09:00 – 19:00
54 Lennon Drive, Crownhill
Milton Keynes, MK8 0AS 112 Buckingham Road, Bletchley
Milton Keynes MK3 5HL
Opening times:
Monday – Friday  07:00 – 21:00
Saturday/Sunday  08:00 – 21:00
Monday – Friday  07:00 – 23:00
Saturday/Sunday  07:00 – 20:00
218 Whaddon Way, Bletchley
Milton Keynes, MK3 7DE
Opening times:
Monday – Saturday  06:00 – 18:00
Sunday  07:00 – 13:00
3 Blackmoor Gate, Furzton
Milton Keynes MK4 1DS
Opening times:
Monday – Sunday  07:00 – 21:00
Great Holm Stores
1-3 Highgrove Hill, Great Holm
Milton Keynes MK8 9AQ
Opening times:
Monday – Sunday  07:00 – 23:00

Further information relating to PayPoint and their outlets can be found on their website:

A pdf version of this document is available here.