School meals and school milk
School meals and school milk

The following Local Government practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • School meals and school milk
  • Food and drink provided to pupils in schools in England
  • Nutritional requirements for school food in England
  • Free school meals and free school milk in England
  • Food and drink provided to pupils in schools in Wales
  • Free school breakfasts at maintained primary schools in Wales

School meals and school milk

Coronavirus (COVID-19): This Practice Note contains guidance on subjects impacted by the Coronavirus Act 2020 (CA 2020). CA 2020, ss 37–38, Sch 16 Pt 1–Sch 16 Pt 3, Sch 17 Pt 1–Sch 17 Pt 3, among other measures, make provision to require temporary closure of educational institutions and to make temporary continuity directions relation to childcare, education and training by way of statutory instruments and/or guidance. For further information as to the current impact on this content, see: Coronavirus (COVID-19)—education tracker.

As with many aspects of education law, the law on school meals is now different in England from that in Wales.

Food and drink provided to pupils in schools in England

Local authorities in England may provide milk, meals and other refreshments to registered pupils and others being educated at maintained schools and to children receiving ‘relevant Early Years education’. This power extends to the provision of lunches at academies, free schools and at independent schools. This catering may be provided either on school premises or elsewhere where education is being provided and the local authorities must provide at maintained schools facilities for the consumption of food and drink brought to school by pupils. Catering in academy schools and at free schools is not regulated by statute, but these schools’ funding agreement with the Department for Education (DfE) or Education Funding Agency

Popular documents