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Greenwich Tucks into Hot, Healthy School Meals

An estimated 18,500 young children in Greenwich now benefit from the Government scheme promoting healthy eating in schools

More primary school children in Greenwich are enjoying a hot, healthy school meals after a campaign by school caterers and the Greenwich Royal Borough Council to promote their quality and value.

Thousands of pupils were enjoying hot of school meals in the borough – and now the number has gone up as thousands more parents take advantage of a new government scheme, which means their children can eat absolutely free. The government-funded scheme applies to all reception class children and years one and two. It means pupils who previously paid for their lunches or brought packed lunches can now also enjoy a free school meal.

An estimated 18,500 young children in Greenwich are now benefiting from the scheme which can save parents £400 every year per child. The campaign to promote school meals follows research showing that giving young child a decent lunch improves their health and ability to learn.

In Greenwich, most of the meals are provided by GS Plus, the company that delivers catering and other services for the council. The company – which scored two successes in a national award scheme last month - has employed an extra 31 catering staff to cope with the extra demand, increasing its local workforce to more than 350 people within the borough’s schools.

Cllr John Fahy, Deputy Leader of the Royal Borough and Cabinet Member for Children’s Services, said: “The fact that every schoolchild up to Year Two in Greenwich can enjoy a nutritious and healthy hot meal every day in our schools is great news. We’re delighted to see our schools offering varied menus to our young children and also know that it really helps our local families that young children are getting these meals for free.”

GS Plus worked closely in partnership with Charlton Manor Primary School for the school to win an award at the recent EduCatering Awards. The company provides the school with a ‘Food For Life Gold Standard Menu’, which supports good, healthy meals that help young learners reach their full academic potential.

At the same awards, GS Plus chef Theraza Tray was a finalist and runner up in the category of Primary School Caterer of the Year 2014.

More information is available at www.royalgreenwich.gov.uk/schoolmeals

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