We're making the case to government for reform of school food funding and policy in England.
The Covid pandemic has revealed a series of challenges with existing school food policy and implementation. It has highlighted:
The reliance of disadvantaged children on free school meals when schools were closed.
The challenges of delivering nutritious food through parcels and vouchers or the setting up of cash payments.
The critical gaps in food provision during school holidays.
The levels of food insecurity among households with children who are currently not eligible for free school meals.
The strength of public concern about children’s access to good food.
The limitations of school canteens in providing hot nutritious meals for all children.
The wide range of responses to these challenges across the UK, and the engagement of schools, local authorities, community groups, volunteers and businesses, offers an important opportunity to capture learnings from the Covid crisis.
Supported by Impact on Urban Health, the campaign for a government review of school food in England brings together leading practitioners and campaigners working to improve school food, and influential voices from the education sector to form the campaign’s working group.
The work will be co-ordinated by School Food Matters, BiteBack2030 and Food Foundation, three charities currently working with Impact on Urban Health as part of the childhood obesity programme. The working group will be chaired by Dr Nick Capstick OBE, Chief Executive of The White Horse Federation.
Our shared goal is to secure a commitment from Department for Education to undertake a comprehensive review of school food policy in England so that no child misses out on nutritious food at school.
We believe that school food should be a consistent and non-partisan priority for government. We use our real-world experience of working in schools to strengthen our campaigns on children’s health, access to nutritious school meals and food education.