Posted by Sally O'Brien, on 28/08/2015. Tags: Education And Politics
The Green Party have this week released a plan that aims to feed every school going child in the country at least one hot meal a day.
Their ambitious plan, which was revealed yesterday,
is an attempt to ‘both deal with child poverty and childhood obesity’. According to figures released earlier this year,
it is thought that 20% of kids in Ireland go to bed hungry and that 600,000 people are experiencing problems with food poverty.
The Green Party launched
their School Dinners Policy insisting that, if implemented, it will see at least one meal provided to every school child during the school day, according to a party statement:
“School meal programmes, common in other European countries, are already in operation across the countries 849 DEIS (Developing Equality of Opportunity in Schools) Schools, serving approximately 200,000 children. The policy, which would cost in the region of €350 million per annum to implement, is aimed at tackling the dual problems of child obesity and food poverty, and end the situation where one in five children go to school hungry every day.”
“Speaking at the launch, Cllr. Catherine Martin, Deputy Leader of the Green Party, described the policy as ambitious, realistic, and something that should be aspired to. “The Green Party’s School Dinners Policy received a fantastic reception when we sought feedback from teachers, headmasters, and parents alike. It’s strongly modelled on the Finnish system, which is consistently ranked as the best education system in the world.
In Ireland in 2015, it’s unacceptable that 20% of our children are going to school hungry. We are facing a public health time-bomb if we don’t address the situation where 300,000 of our children are overweight or obese. This policy is ambitious, achievable and forward thinking.”
The full Green Party School Dinners Policy is available here