Rotherham and Lincolnshire-based Wickersley Partnership Trust has made the decision to move to free school meal vouchers from Monday 18th January, to replace the food parcel scheme currently in place.
As of Monday, every child who is eligible for free school meals – no matter if they are currently attending school or working from home – will be entitled to a weekly £15 food voucher to be spent at any supermarket of choice.
The food voucher will be given to eligible families to cover five meals per week, per child. This is to ensure that all of the Trust’s children will have access to nutritional and substantial meals during the school week.
This comes after Wickersley Partnership Trust decided that the food parcels – limited by budgets set by the government – were not of equivalent value of a student’s free school meal entitlement, nor did the quality of the product meet the high expectations of the schools or the Trust.
Wickersley Partnership Trust followed the government and Department of Education’s advice and guidance from Friday 8th January to work with the catering team to provide food parcels to those pupils who are working from home.
Helen O’Brien, CEO of Wickersley Partnership Trust said: “We will always ensure that children are at the heart of each decision we make, and whilst I recognise the hard work of our catering teams, the food parcels did not meet the expectation of our Trust. It is for this reason that Wickersley Partnership Trust intends to direct Rotherham Council to reinstate the voucher scheme that was so successful during the first closure.”