Story by Juliane Caillouette Noble
Zac Goldsmith MP joined forces with Jamie and other school food campaigners today by tabling a motion in parliament that calls for his fellow MP’s to expresses its concern that academies and free schools opened since September 2010 are no longer required to meet the mandatory standards for school food; and calls on the Secretary of State to amend the regulations and once again require all schools including academies and free schools to adhere to the standards for school food so that the one million children now attending these schools can benefit from this commitment to their health and well-being.
Here’s what Jamie had to say in support of Mr Goldsmith’s actions:
Jamie’s Statement on Zac Goldsmith’s School Food EDM and SOS call to Save Our School Food Standards
Jamie Oliver, with the backing of The Children’s Food Campaign, LACA, The Food for Life Partnership and School Food Matters, has welcomed the Early Day Motion proposed by Zac Goldsmith MP today which draws attention to the increasing concerns over the removal of nutritional standards for school food from new academies and free schools.
Jamie explains: “Back in 2005, a great many teachers, parents, kids and the media fought together to ensure that school food in the UK improved from an all-time low to the situation we have today where nutritional standards ensure that kids can have a good, balanced meal for 190 days of the year. For some kids, that’s their only freshly-made, nutritious hot meal of the day and so it’s extremely important that we safeguard the standards.
“Over the last year, I’ve become increasingly worried that the nutritional standards we fought so hard to introduce, are not being applied to the new academies which the coalition government favours. As a result, head-teachers under financial pressures may feel that quality school food can take a back-seat and the bad old days of reconstituted meat shapes and chips every day could easily make a comeback.
“It’s in everyone’s interests to fight again to ensure that the nutritional standards are re-implemented across all schools and I welcome Mr Goldsmith’s EDM and hope that it gets the support of MPs so that it can be debated as soon as possible.
“We need to send a strong message and to do that we need as many MPs as possible from across all parties to sign this motion. Our friends at the Children’s Food Campaign have created a simple and quick online action which finds and then tells your MP that school food matters to you. So please get involved. Take action now at www.sosfood.org.uk.”
About the author: Juliane Caillouette Noble is the Social Media/ School Projects Assistant