Call to extend free school meals

Bath’s Mp, Wera Hobhouse,, has thrown her support behind calls for the free school meals scheme to be extended to children from all families who receive universal credit payments.

Free school meals are provided to 1.7million children across England. This is around 1 in 5 school pupils. For some children, this is the only meal they get each day.

Teachers have called on the government to extend the scheme to cover all children from families who receive universal credit payments. At present, for children in England in Year 3 and above, only those from households earning below £7,400 annually are eligible.

Wales and Scotland have recently committed to rolling out free school meals to all primary school students. 

The Liberal Democrats have long championed free school meals as a way to support families and ensure every child is able to thrive at school. In 2014, Lib Dems delivered universal free school meals for children aged up to 7.

Wera Hobhouse MP commented:

“The Liberal Democrats have been calling on the government to extend the free school meals scheme since October 2020. It is simply unacceptable that the government is allowing children to go hungry when they have the power to change it.

“Unfortunately, we’ve seen time and time again that this government is happy to delay and dither in providing the support that families desperately need. Kind words mean nothing when children are going hungry. They need action now.”