Thomas Bridge 22 September 2014

Council investigates claim pupils received single chicken nugget for lunch

A council is launching an investigation into claims local reception children received only one chicken nugget for their school lunch.

Concerns about portion sizes were raised by Birmingham City Council’s education and vulnerable children overview and scrutiny committee.

The news came after £1bn of Government funding was committed to delivering free school meals for some of the country’s youngest primary school children. The two-year pledge was accompanied by a £150m handout to help councils meet increased dining pressures with new school kitchens.

However Birmingham’s Cllr Valerie Seabright said she was now ‘seriously concerned’ about the quality of food being served up to pupils after visiting one school.

‘The rations and portions are not brilliant. In reception class children get just one nugget, Year 1 get two and Year 2 get three or four,’ she told the Birmingham Mail.

‘Why are reception only getting one chicken nugget? Is it subsidising the children getting more chicken nuggets in Year 1 or 2? That shouldn’t be the case when all children get the same funding per head.’

‘In one class I went to the children didn’t get any fresh vegetables or fruit.’

‘This is serious - it is not working. I think we should insist that there is more training of staff, they need to know about sizes of rations,’ Cllr Seabright added.

The exact school where the single chicken nugget was allegedly served has not yet been verified.

A Birmingham City Council spokesperson said: ‘We take any concern about the provision of school meals very seriously and are working hard to establish the facts in this particular case.

‘Once we know more information we can act accordingly to ensure that the highest standards of nutritious school meal provision is continued to be delivered by our hard working and dedicated team of staff.

‘We offer balanced menus and follow all nutritional guidelines laid down by government,’ the spokesperson added.

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