Merton Council pledges to cover the cost of free school meals this half term

As half term begins, Merton Council has pledged to reimburse the borough’s schools for any food related support they provide in half term week to families of children who would be eligible for Free School Meals during term time, up to the value of £15 per child.

Where schools are not providing direct support themselves, families can be referred onto emergency support provided by local organisations, including the Wimbledon Foodbank, the Dons Local Action Group and the Merton Community Fridge Network.

Merton Council’s Cabinet Member for Children’s Services and Education, Councillor Eleanor Stringer said: “No child in Merton should go hungry this half term. We know that free school meals are a lifeline for many families and we are committed to bridging the gap this week between some of the most deprived pupils in the borough and their classmates.

“The council supports the campaign to End Child Food Poverty. Although we have a fantastic, dedicated network in Merton to support families in need, the Government needs to step in and provide funding directly to families to ensure that no parent has to struggle to feed their children.”