All children in Hull schools currently receiving free school meals will be given a £10 voucher from Hull City Council at the start of next term, to assist in reimbursing costs of food over the half term week.
The move comes as the Government last week voted not to extend the provision of free school meals into school holidays. A Labour motion to extend free school meal provision into the school holidays was defeated by 322 votes to 261 in the Commons last Wednesday.
A very well-received public campaign earlier this year by Marcus Rashford, of Manchester United football club, had secured Government funding for free meals for school children throughout the summer holidays.
Councillor Peter Clark, Hull City Council’s Portfolio Holder for learning, skills and safeguarding children said: “Whilst we would have liked to have arranged this ahead of half-term, with Parliament only voting on Wednesday not to extend free school meal provision over holiday periods, the Council has had to very quickly assess how best to help struggling families at this time.
“It is not possible logistically for us to provide vouchers to all 11,000 eligible families ahead of half-term, this is the most effective way of ensuring that all children who need it get the necessary support, and we will consult with our schools about distribution.”
Families that may be entitled to free school meals are encouraged to apply. Parents can find out more and apply online here or through their child’s school.
[Jerome Whittingham – editor HULL IS THIS]