Bolton parents to save £3.5 million as thousands of kids get free school meals from September

School dinners. Thousands in Bolton will get them free from September.

School dinners. Thousands in Bolton will get them free from September.

First published in News

THOUSANDS of youngsters in Bolton will get free school meals from September — with parents set to save £3.5 million.

The government says that free school dinners for children aged between four and seven will save individual families £400 per year.

It is thought that nearly 9,000 children in the area will now be eligible for free lunches — and the government says it will save parents in Bolton £3,578,400 a year.

Up until now, only children from low income families were entitled to free school meals. Now they will be free to all children in reception class, Year One and Year Two.

Deputy prime minister Nick Clegg said: “Free school meals for infants will not only save families hundreds of pounds a year but will also have an impact on how a child performs in the classroom so that, regardless of their background, every child can have the best possible start in life.

“Pupils at the pilot schools who were all given free meals were found to be up to two months ahead of their peers elsewhere.

“This is one of the most progressive changes to our school system for a long time. My goal is to create a level playing field for all of our children so their success will be determined by their talents and efforts alone and not by their parents’ bank balance.”

In Bolton, thanks to a local authority initiative, nursery and junior pupils will benefit from the £1.25 discount, making lunches for other children in primary school cheapest in the country.

Bolton Council introduced its school meals promotions in 2009, and this has led to more than 2,700 additional pupils tucking in to a school meal each school day — with 65 per cent of children in the borough having a school dinner compared to 50 per cent of youngsters nationally.

The government says its policy will also help to reduce childhood obesity, which in Bolton currently stands at 21.2 per — just over one in five children being classed as obese as they prepare to leave primary school.

Comments (4)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

10:53pm Wed 20 Aug 14

Citizen Cane says...

So how exactly will free school meals reduce infant obesity? The extra cash in the hands of irresponsible parents will simply be recycled into the purchase of yet more junk food, highly sugared drinks, fags or other poor lifestyle choices.

Yet another initiative in the tax and waste initiative. Vote UKIP to bring common sense back
So how exactly will free school meals reduce infant obesity? The extra cash in the hands of irresponsible parents will simply be recycled into the purchase of yet more junk food, highly sugared drinks, fags or other poor lifestyle choices. Yet another initiative in the tax and waste initiative. Vote UKIP to bring common sense back Citizen Cane
  • Score: 1

12:36am Thu 21 Aug 14

johnnykilroy4 says...

This is a good thing the government have done but then i think they must be getting something out of this ? In 2015 there's the general elections ? Soft soap parents when its time to vote ?
This is a good thing the government have done but then i think they must be getting something out of this ? In 2015 there's the general elections ? Soft soap parents when its time to vote ? johnnykilroy4
  • Score: 2

11:00am Thu 21 Aug 14

I.careless2 says...

have you seen how small that plate is ?
next question what is it on the plate ? it looks very unapetising and unidentifiable.
I would not serve that to my kids and more to the point they would not eat it
90% of what my kids eat is fresh grown on the allotment and cooked and served with a little more ...consideration
I know the budget is tight but if you would not fancy eating it what makes them think you can talk a chilfd into it.
have you seen how small that plate is ? next question what is it on the plate ? it looks very unapetising and unidentifiable. I would not serve that to my kids and more to the point they would not eat it 90% of what my kids eat is fresh grown on the allotment and cooked and served with a little more ...consideration I know the budget is tight but if you would not fancy eating it what makes them think you can talk a chilfd into it. I.careless2
  • Score: -1

12:48pm Thu 21 Aug 14

Gman13 says...

I.careless2 wrote:
have you seen how small that plate is ?
next question what is it on the plate ? it looks very unapetising and unidentifiable.
I would not serve that to my kids and more to the point they would not eat it
90% of what my kids eat is fresh grown on the allotment and cooked and served with a little more ...consideration
I know the budget is tight but if you would not fancy eating it what makes them think you can talk a chilfd into it.
I'm no expert but it looks like shepherds pie peas carrots and cauliflower, the clue is wots on the plate! Oh and just a random picture.............
...
[quote][p][bold]I.careless2[/bold] wrote: have you seen how small that plate is ? next question what is it on the plate ? it looks very unapetising and unidentifiable. I would not serve that to my kids and more to the point they would not eat it 90% of what my kids eat is fresh grown on the allotment and cooked and served with a little more ...consideration I know the budget is tight but if you would not fancy eating it what makes them think you can talk a chilfd into it.[/p][/quote]I'm no expert but it looks like shepherds pie peas carrots and cauliflower, the clue is wots on the plate! Oh and just a random picture............. ... Gman13
  • Score: 1
Post a comment

Remember you are personally responsible for what you post on this site and must abide by our site terms. Do not post anything that is false, abusive or malicious. If you wish to complain, please use the ‘report this post’ link.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree