The Healthy Schools Rating Scheme is here!

8 July 2019

The long-awaiting Healthy Schools Rating Scheme is here and we're delighted to note that Department for Education has listened and the scheme now includes secondary schools.

At SFM we've been campaigning hard for this scheme since it was proposed in the Childhood Obesity Plan in August 2016. We offered Department for Education our help and support, and provided evidence to show that the scheme would be welcomed by parents, teachers and governors.

We now have something to get stuck into and hopefully we can work with DfE to make the best of this first step and encourage schools to participate.  We'll be digging deep into the rather short paper published today but early thoughts are:

  • this is a good first step
  • we're delighted that secondary schools have been included
  • the scheme has a good focus on food education
  • it puts compliance with school food standards front and centre
  • the paper references Ofsted and its engagement with the scheme and we hope that there will be guidance for inspectors so that they can use the scheme to make judgements
  • the mechansim for engagement via the Active Lives survey on the Sport England website feels a little convoluted. It also puts focus firmly on physical activity rather than healthy eating which is at odds with the evidence that physical activity is secondary to calorie consumption when tackling obesity - "no-one can outrun a bad diet"

 

It's early days for the scheme so we'll be sharing updates as things develop but for now a great big welcome to the Healthy Schools Rating Scheme!

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