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School Packed Lunch Policy

Rationale for the policy

The aim of this policy is to ensure that all packed lunches brought from home and consumed in school (or on school trips) provide pupils with a healthy, balanced and nutritious lunch.  We also want to ensure consistency between school meals and packed lunches. 

The policy has been written after consultation of national and local guidance (including The Health & Wellbeing Service, Leeds Catering Agency, School Food Standards and School Food Trust).  We have also liaised with our Parent Forum, catering staff and the School Food Ambassadors through the School Council to improve school dinners in conjunction with packed lunches.

Special diets and allergies

We acknowledged that some special diets may not allow lunchboxes to strictly adhere to this policy.  The school will work with families to ensure that lunchboxes are as healthy and nutritious as possible and will agree alternatives where this is a possibility.

Our catering service is committed to meeting the dietary needs of all children so we would encourage pupils to eat a school meal if the packed lunch policy does not support their needs.  Please inform the school of any dietary requirements in writing supported by a letter from the GP where possible. 

As some children in school have nut allergies, we would ask that parents refrain from including nuts or peanut butter in lunches.  Children will also be discouraged from swapping items from their lunchboxes.

How we will support the policy

  • Encourage children to eat healthily and try different foods as part of a whole school approach in the curriculum.
  • Provide facilities to store packed lunch boxes.
  • Facilitate appropriate dining hall arrangements where children can sit in their social groups regardless of the catering they choose.
  • Provide free, fresh drinking water.
  • Celebrate good food swaps, children trying new foods and lunchboxes that are healthy and nutritious.
  • Review the policy on a yearly basis through School Council, Parent Forum and Governors.

How parents can support the policy

  • Provide a named packed lunch container (with ice packs if they are needed during the warmer months).
  • Follow the guidelines of this policy and ensure their child is encouraged to try new foods at home.
  • Discuss any specific needs here at school where we can offer guidance and support.
  • Ensure that ‘treats’ (crisps, biscuits etc) are only sent into school on a Friday.