At Highfield Primary School we promote healthy eating to our families and children and recognise the crucial role that parents play in supporting the school’s approach. Eating a healthy diet is associated with higher attainment, increased concentration levels, maintaining a healthy weight and better overall health and wellbeing, helping your child to perform at their best at school.
It is also important to remind you that we are a NUT FREE school. Please do not send your children in with any nuts or snacks including nuts, e.g cereal bars, chocolate spreads (Nutella) etc. There are a number of children in our school with severe allergies therefore it is essential we adhere to this rule throughout the school.
To support us in achieving a healthier school, we have put together some ‘Packed Lunch Guidelines’ that we hope will be useful to parents/carers. These guidelines apply to all pupils and parents/carers providing packed lunches to be consumed within school or on school trips during school hours.
Why were these guidelines formulated?
- To make a positive contribution to children’s health and reflect a Healthy School
- To promote consistency between packed lunches and food provided by schools which must adhere to national food standards set by the government
Packed lunches should include:
- At least one portion of fruit and one portion of vegetables every day
- Meat or other source of non-dairy protein (e.g. lentils, kidney beans, chickpeas, hummus or falafel) every day
- Fish at least once a week and oily fish, such as salmon, trout, mackerel and sardines, at least once every three weeks.
- A starchy food such as any type of bread, pasta, rice, couscous, noodles, potatoes or other type of cereals every day. Aim for wholegrain varieties where possible
- Dairy food such as milk, cheese, yoghurt, fromage frais, soya products everyday
- Preferably water to drink although pure fruit juice, semi-skimmed or skimmed milk, smoothies, low fat, low sugar yoghurt or milk drinks are permitted
- If a pudding is included we ask that it is fruit based, for example fruit salad or tinned fruit with yoghurt or custard, fruity rice pudding (eg. Muller Rice), fruit smoothies and fruit based crumbles
- Savoury crackers or breadsticks served with fruit, vegetables or dairy food
Packed lunches should not include:
- Salted snacks such as crisps. Instead, seeds, vegetables and fruit (with no added sugar or fat)
- Confectionery such as chocolate bars, chocolate-coated biscuits, chocolate spread, sweets and chewing gum
- Meat products such as sausage roll, individual pies, corned meat and sausage/chipolatas should be included only occasionally (no more than twice a week)
- Fizzy or sugary drinks, including Capri Sun, Fruit Shoot and Ribena
Special diets and allergies:
The school recognises that some pupils may require special diets that do not allow for the standards to be met exactly. In this case parents and carers are urged to be responsible in ensuring that packed lunches are as healthy as possible. For these reasons pupils are also not permitted to swap food items.
We allow children to have a healthy snack at break time. Children in Early Years and KS1 are provided with a piece of fruit/vegetables, while in KS2 parents/carers have the option to provide their child with a healthy snack, for break time. Like EYFS/KS1, this snack must also be fruit/vegetable based, not biscuits, pastries, crisps etc.
Monitoring packed lunches/snacks:
To promote healthy eating we will regularly monitor the content of packed lunches and snacks children are consuming at playtimes, involving pupils and staff where possible. Stickers will sometimes be awarded to those children who bring in packed lunches that meet our school expectations for a ‘Healthy Packed Lunch’. We will talk to parents and carers where necessary and offer advice and guidance on bringing in more healthy packed lunches. If children consistently bring packed lunches that do not adhere to these guidelines a letter will be sent home with a copy of this policy.