Council Wins National Award For Free School Meals

Tower Hamlets Council has won the Group Award at the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) Excellence in School Food Awards for its Universal Free School Meals (UFSMs) in Secondary Schools programme.

In September 2023 the council became the first local authority in England to provide UFSMs to all secondary school pupils.

The scheme supports families during the cost-of-living crisis, providing a saving of £550 per year, per child, alongside promoting healthy eating behaviours.

Early data also shows that there has been a significant upturn in pupils eligible for Government-funded free school meals since the launch of the scheme, demonstrating that the programme is having a positive impact on children living in poverty and removing the stigma associated with free school meals.
The award was judged by a group of MPs from across the country, who recognised how the project team worked together to achieve positive outcomes on local communities and children.

Lutfur Rahman, Executive Mayor of Tower Hamlets, said: “Congratulations and thank you to everyone who has been involved in delivering and promoting the UFSMs in Secondary Schools scheme.

“I am delighted that the project has received the national recognition it deserves, and I hope this inspires other councils to follow suit.”

Cllr Maium Talukdar, Deputy Mayor and Cabinet Member for Education, Youth and Lifelong Learning, said: “I am extremely grateful to the judges for selecting us and proud that Tower Hamlets Council is leading the way.

“I am looking forward to seeing the positive impact the scheme continues to have on young people and families in Tower Hamlets.”

You might also like