From this week all infant school pupils including 4742 children in Windsor and Maidenhead will benefit from a free hot and healthy meal at lunchtime- thanks to the Lib Dems in Government.
Local councillor Simon Werner has welcomed this good news for local families, “School food has changed beyond recognition since I was at school in Maidenhead many years ago. Nowadays menus are loaded with healthy food by kitchen staff who care about the dishes they serve.”
“Research has shown that free school meals will improve children’s education, make sure they eat more healthy food, and save parents money.”
Students were found on average to be two months ahead of their peers in areas where school meals were not offered.
There was also marked progress in the number of children who hit target levels in Maths and English at Key Stage One.
Simon Werner says, “And this will also help many families in Maidenhead who are feeling the squeeze at the moment. During the course of a year, the average family spends £400 on lunch for each child. This will help ease the financial burden for these families and give every child the chance in life that they deserve.”
The School Food Plan can be read at:
The Coalition will fund schools in England to provide free meals for all children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 in a measure that will save families £400 a year per child while helping to raise school standards and cut the attainment gap.
Universal free school meals for primary school pupils were a key recommendation in a recent review of school food produced independently for the Department for Education. The review found that, in pilots where all children had been given a free school dinner, students were academically months ahead of their peers elsewhere and more likely to eat vegetables at lunchtime.
At the same time, the Coalition will extend free school meals to disadvantaged students in further education and sixth form colleges. Free school meals are currently available only for eligible students at school sixth forms.