ASCL response to Commons vote on free school meals

21/10/2020
Geoff Barton, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, comments on the defeat of a Commons motion to extend free school meal provision into holiday periods until Easter 2021.
 
Commenting on the defeat of a Commons motion to extend free school meal provision into holiday periods until Easter 2021, Geoff Barton, General Secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said:
 
“We are deeply disappointed by the government’s continued refusal to extend free school meal provision into holiday periods when this simple measure would so obviously help to alleviate the hardship faced by many families during the Covid emergency.
 
“It is our view that free school meal provision for eligible children should be extended to holiday periods on a permanent basis because of the clear educational and health benefits of good nutrition, but the case for doing so in the immediate straitened circumstances of the current crisis is surely overwhelming.
 
“We understand the spending pressures faced by the government, but it is wrong to put saving money before children’s welfare, and it should think again.”