Government to Fund Free School Breakfasts - Who Can Get it?
- £26 Million to breakfast clubs in England
- More than 1,700 schools will benefit from it
- Schools will decide which pupils are eligible
- But many will no longer receive free school lunches
The Government has announced that it will be injecting £26 million into supporting breakfast clubs across England.
The announcement comes just weeks after huge changes were made to free school lunches in the UK.
More than 1,770 state schools will benefit from the money, and it will be targeted at the most disadvantaged areas of the county.
What are breakfast clubs?
Breakfast clubs are before-school clubs for children.
They typically open around an hour before school starts, and most are run on school premises, although some take place at other venues, such as community centres.
They may be run by teachers, teaching assistants, catering staff, and/or volunteers.
Kate Price, corporate social responsibility manager for Kellogg’s, said, “The main purpose of a breakfast club is to provide a safe, secure environment before school, where children can have a decent breakfast with their friends.”
It is understood that it will be left up to schools to decide how to run their breakfast schemes, which means that they will be able to decide if the funding will cover all students, of just the more disadvantaged ones.
Two charities- Family Action and Magic Breakfast- will be responsible for running the clubs.
How will breakfast clubs be funded?
The money for this is coming from the new levy on soft drinks, where drinks with high sugar levels are being taxed more.
Damian Hinds, Educations Secretary, said, “A healthy breakfast can help fuel children’s concentration so they can get the most out of their school day.
“Children only get one chance at an education and they deserve the best, whatever their background.
“That is why we are giving more pupils in some of the country’s more disadvantaged areas the chance to go to a breakfast club.
“Paid for by the Government’s soft drinks levy, this investment will help raise education standards further and will make sure young people have happy, healthy, childhoods.”
The clubs are due to start this spring.
Angela Rayner, Shadow Education Secretary, said, “The Tories are still shredding their manifesto one page at a time, and they are trying to hide behind old policy announcements to do it.
“They abandoned their promise of a breakfast for every primary school child, slashed the healthy pupils fund by more than three quarters, and now they are re-announcing a six-month old policy and hoping nobody will notice.
“This is littler better than the famous 6.8 pence breakfast- ridiculed and exposed as inadequate in the last election.”
Who can use the breakfast clubs?
It is not yet clear what the criteria will be for breakfast clubs, as it will be up to each individual school to decide.
To find out if your child can use them for free, the best way is to contact the school directly, first to check if there is a breakfast club, and also to see which children are eligible.
What do you think about the plan? Let us know in the comments!