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Big Win: UK Government Promises to Enforce the School Food Standards!

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Today the Government promised to enforce the school food standards by asking all schools to report on their school food plans every year. A new inspection programme will also be developed to make sure canteens are meeting the school food standards and the Government is going to invest £5 million into training and support for schools to revolutionise cookery, leadership and governance! Here are some of our live reactions to this amazing news.

The announcement today is in large part due to the public pressure you helped create as part of our #SpillTheBeans campaign. Thank you! Without the powerful stories of young people from across the country, this campaign would be nowhere. 

It all started in June 2021 when we held ten panel discussions where young people aged 13-18 shared their experiences with school food. Their findings were shared in our #SpillTheBeans report, published in November detailing  how the food we eat is a total postcode lottery. We asked if you had the same experiences and our supporters shared more than 75 stories of your school meals, further underlining our findings. We shared our report with decision makers, including from the UK Government, and even made the news with Anisah appearing on Channel 4 with Jon Snow! 

And just this month, we co-ordinated an open letter signed by over 600 school leaders that agreed school food standards need to be enforced. Jamie Oliver backed them up — calling on Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi to level up school food. He agreed, promising to arrange a meeting! All of this resulted in the big announcement that was made today.

But there is still more to do. We need to keep the pressure up so that the UK Government keeps their promise to make reporting on school food a mandatory requirement for every school. It’s critical that Nadhim Zahawi knows the public supports this big step forward, and will be watching. Send a tweet now to say: thank you for listening to young people!

Harrison Youth Board Headshot
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We’ve been working so hard to make school food better for everybody. It’s not fair that some young people get loads of healthy options and others none. This campaign is about protecting child health — that’s why we’ve spoken to our classmates, taken photos of our dinners and shared our findings with MPs and Peers. Today, our voices have been heard. These measures will make a real difference to young people across the country.
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Harrison Wright, age 16

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