Food and Drink

Snacks
Our school participates in the Government Free Fruits for Schools project and each child is provided with a piece of fruit or a piece of vegetable during the morning break. The children greatly enjoy their healthy snacks and parents have reported that the children have been encouraged to eat a wider range of fruit and vegetables.

School lunches
iamges2bAt Four Lanes Infant School, we believe the best option for children at lunchtime is to have the hot school dinner, provided through our partnership with HC3S.

We expect that parents of all children will take up the option of the universal infant free school meal. This is because we believe that the hot school dinner option is much better for the children’s learning and health. We recognise the evidence that states

  • Children are better prepared for learning if they eat well
  • Children make more progress if they have eaten the right nutritional lunch
  • Only 1% of packed lunches provide the correct nutrition
  • Eating hot dinners is an important social occasion and the children learn vital social skills

HC3S provide all the nutrients that children require through the week. They produce a menu which has a three-weekly cycle and is available for parents to view. The school lunch menu can be downloaded by visiting the school lunch website.

Our goal is to have ZERO packed lunches.

Even though all infant children are entitled to Universal Free School Meals, for some of those children, schools will also be able to claim Pupil Premium, which will help provide further support for those children.  The criteria for eligibility is the same as, and comes from, what is the free school meal criteria from Key Stage 2 onwards.

This criteria for eligibility is where parents/guardians are in receipt of one or more of the following benefits:

  • Income Support
  • Income-based Job Seekers’ Allowance
  • Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • the Guaranteed element of State Pension Credit
  • Child Tax Credit, provided you are not also entitled to Working Tax Credit, and have an annual gross income, of no more than £16,190 as assessed by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs1
  • Working Tax Credit run-on paid for 4 weeks after you stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit.

Parents who meet the standard free meal criteria, are encouraged to register. Please use the online service if you believe that your child may be eligible.

Special dietary requirements
Our kitchens are able to cater for special dietary requirements linked to allergies or religious beliefs. Where a special diet is required for medical reasons, a letter detailing this information is required from your family doctor. Please contact the school office to discuss any special dietary requirements.

Lunch time drink
Drinking water is provided for children having packed lunches and school lunches. However, in addition to a bottle of plain water for your child to drink in class, you may wish to provide a bottle of plain water for your child to drink during lunch. A bottle with a sports-cap is ideal and should be clearly labelled with your child’s name. Please note that glass bottles and fizzy drinks are not permitted.

Packed lunches
We encourage you to support our Healthy School Policy by packing a healthily balanced lunch for your child. We ask that packed lunches do not contain crisps or sweets, although a biscuit based chocolate bar, such as a Kit Kat or Breakaway, is acceptable.

As a number of children have severe nut allergies, we would like to remind you that peanut butter and nuts should not be included in the children’s packed lunches or snacks. We appreciate that many products contain or may contain nuts and nut oils and ask that, as far as is reasonably possible, these are not brought to school.

There are many online sources of ideas and information and the following websites may be of help to you:
The NHS has put together some useful information on providing a balanced packed lunch
The School Food Trust also has information on food at school including different packed lunch menu ideas available on their website
The British Nutrition Foundation has useful information on their website