Half of pupils are taking school meals, the highest level for six years. Of the 19 per cent eligible for free meals, 15 per cent take them. Schools in Glasgow have the biggest gap between entitlement to free meals and take-up, according to the latest census figures, which show that 41 per cent of pupils in the city are eligible but only 34 per cent were actually taking them (although 9,700 pupils were "missing" on census day in January). The authority with the closest alignment between entitlement and take-up is Perth and Kinross, at 7.4 per cent and 6.8 per cent respectively (again, there were 1,500 fewer pupils on census day than were on the register).
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