Free school meals for all primary school children: today’s policy announcement

Free school meals for all primary school children is today’s Liberal Democrat proposal floated in the media:

In an interview with The Independent, Mr Laws rejected criticism of the current programme to provide free meals for five- to seven-year-olds, and said the scheme would be rolled out for seven- to 11-year-olds in the lifetime of the next parliament if the Liberal Democrats are re-elected…

Mr Laws was speaking as 16,500 infant and primary schools prepare to start serving free meals to five- to seven-year-olds this week – realising a commitment made by Nick Clegg as his party’s conference last September…

“It is one of the most important policies that we in the Liberal Democrats have delivered within the Department for Education since 2010,” he said. “It is on a par with the pupil premium” – which gives schools extra money for every disadvantaged pupil they take in, extending early years education to two-year-olds and improving accountability measures for schools.

“I’m a passionate advocate of the policy because it achieves so many things – it deals with child poverty and increases the socialisation of children,” Mr Laws said.

The is one part of the pre-manifesto document which will get debated at the Liberal Democrat conference in Glasgow this October. Nick Clegg’s foreword to that document, along with some of its highlights, was published at the weekend.

Take a look at my archive of policy posts to see the other proposals recently launched that will also feature at Glasgow.

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