At least half a million children in the UK arrive at school each day too hungry to learn. Research has shown a direct link between the breakfast habits of children and their educational attainment with children in primary schools where breakfast is provided
achieving on average up to 2 months’ additional academic progress over the course of a year.
The Department for Education are funding the National School Breakfast Programme, in partnership with Magic Breakfast and Family Action who are working to support over 1770 schools in disadvantaged communities across the country to improve access to healthy
breakfasts and learning.
The service aims to:
- Improve educational outcomes of disadvantaged young people by ensuring more children receive a healthy breakfast at the start of their day.
- Share best practices across schools and encourage innovative approaches to school breakfast provision.
How it works
Schools benefiting from the programme will be offered customised support according to their situation and needs including start up grants and deliveries of healthy food to ensure every child who needs breakfast receives one. All schools will receive advice
and support from one of the programme’s school partners to help them develop new and effective ways of improving breakfast provision and maximise the number of children reached.
In terms of the offer:
• All schools receive a start-up grant of £500
• Schools who do not currently have healthy, sustainable breakfasts already in place will receive free breakfasts. The funding for food is only available until March 2020 – but the contractor will work with schools to put a longer term, sustainable plan
• Some schools may be eligible for additional support but Magic Breakfast / Family Action are not promoting this offer to schools – only 10% will benefit from additional funding e.g. for more training - that will be on the basis of a thorough needs assessment.
Family Action are the lead contractor in the breakfast club programme, working with Magic Breakfast as the delivery partner. Information on the programme is
here including an
EOI for schools. An EOI must be completed to enable your school to be part of the programme. EOI’s should to be emailed to
After your school has submitted an EOI the contractors will be in touch to assess current provision (if any) and scope what support is needed. Your school will then be made an offer and the programme kicks off.
This is not the only wave of recruitment, however, because Bradford is an Opportunity Area there is an incentive to get Bradford schools recruited as early as possible to ensure they are funded for the longest time possible – funding ends by
Please see the website is a useful source of information -
· What is actually on offer? Is this just a £500 grant with more if there are complexities in terms of training and facilities, or does the school get ongoing support with the costs of food?
Schools that are eligible (using the IDACI measure) and do not have good provision in place will get the start-up grant and free healthy breakfasts – healthy cereals / bagels / porridge etc. Schools will able receive bespoke support, advice and guidance.
Each school will have a ‘school partner’ to understand and assess the needs of the schools to overcome challenges and barriers to ensure the most disadvantaged and vulnerable children benefit from the offer.
· If the school does get ongoing support with the costs of food, how long does that support last and what happens once the funding runs out?
End goal is to build in sustainability after programme – will support schools until March 2020 and work with them to ensure long term sustainability. The
funding ends in March 2020. Incentive to get OA schools signed up early!
· What about staffing costs? Does the school have to pay teachers or teaching assistants to staff the Breakfast Clubs?
Yes – schools do pay for this - they cover the staffing of the breakfast club. Magic Breakfast can help schools to think this through and ensure that its affordability and sustainable.
· If a school already runs its own club (and is paying for the food on offer) do they get the option of switching to this scheme and what is the qualifying criteria for this?
They would be eligible if their club met the ‘in need of improvement’ criteria (e.g. where food is unhealthy / the most disadvantaged children are not being reached). This would be assessed through the process set out above. If the school has a sustainable
healthy breakfast club already and are reaching the most disadvantaged children, they wouldn’t be eligible for this scheme. The model may vary – for example, where a school has a healthy breakfast club but is not reaching the most vulnerable, they might provide
funding and support to set up a nurture group in school.
· What is the purpose of the EOI?
EOI identifies whether schools meet the eligibility list and does an initial assessment of the current provision, where relevant.
For further information please contact