ASCL comment on IFS analysis of free breakfast clubs in schools

Pepe Di’Iasio, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, responds to analysis from the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) on the impact of Labour’s plan to introduce free breakfast clubs in all English primary schools.
“Ensuring all primary school children are able to start the day with a nutritious meal is a laudable ambition. Although many schools already provide breakfast clubs in various forms, Labour’s policy will support universal provision.

“With rates of child poverty so high, it’s vitally important that work is done to ensure pupils are in a fit state to learn when they come to school. Breakfast clubs have a role to play, but there is also a need to revamp free school meals as so many children are missing out under the current system. Extending free school meal eligibility to all families in receipt of universal credit, and introducing a system of auto-enrolment would be quick changes that could make a big difference.

“What’s crucial is that Labour’s breakfast club policy is part of a wider strategy to tackle child poverty and not the extent of their ambitions.”