UK & World News
Teachers 'Buying Breakfast' For Hungry Pupils
Rising numbers of children are going to school on an empty stomach, according to a new report.
Four in five teachers (79%) claim their pupils are turning up for lessons hungry, with more than half (55%) saying the numbers have increased in the past year.
Two-thirds of 500 teachers surveyed (68%) said the main reason was parents not caring if their children have a decent breakfast.
Some 57% of teachers suggested a lack of money was to blame for pupils not being fed at home.
Many teachers end up buying food for youngsters out of their own pocket in a bid to help, the report found.
Nearly one in three (31%) of those questioned said they take food into school to give to hungry pupils.
The report, by Opinion Matters for cereal maker Kellogg's, says 13% of primary school teachers apparently spend up to £24.99 a month feeding youngsters.
It warns that arriving for school hungry can impair a child's concentration, cause behavioural problems and affect learning.
The report suggests breakfast clubs are a cost-effective way to ensure children eat before lessons.
But it adds many clubs in schools across England have closed in the past year due to a shortage of funds.
Karin Woodley, chief executive of education charity ContinYou, said: "Many families are really struggling financially and, in extreme cases, this means that there simply isn't enough food to go round.
"Breakfast clubs can provide a lifeline for these families, so we're extremely concerned to hear that many are being forced to close."
Earlier this year, a survey by the Association of Teachers and Lecturers found young children in England are being served "very small" school dinners and given a limited choice despite paying more for their meals.
It revealed almost a third of teachers do not believe school meals are value for money, with some warning that pupils are often being given chips, pasta and rice rather than vegetables and salad.
It also found there had been an increase in free school meals - a measure of poverty - as more families were hit by economic problems.
The report comes as separate figures suggest number of the UK's poor and destitute receiving emergency food aid has almost doubled in the past six months.
The Trussell Trust, the country's largest organiser of food banks, said that from April to September nearly 110,000 adults and children were referred for emergency help by professionals such as the police, social workers and job centre advisers and GPs.
:: The Opinion Matters survey for Kellogg's questioned 500 teachers between August 7-21.
what do you think?
I find it hard to believe that a family with children can't afford bread and margarine. As a single parent, who works part-time for the NHS I do what I have to to ensure food and clothes for my two children. What I did see when living in one area of very high unemployment was a reliance on takeaway meals by others living around me and an obsession with sky tv and mobile phones. Not to mention the drink and drugs openly consumed. If a teacher is feeding hungry kids they should be letting the social services know for the reasons to be investigated and help and advice provided. Although this study is hardly, free from bias been carried out by kellogg's over the drop in breakfast clubs is it.
John, the families that are happy to send their kids to school starving are the same ones that don't work but still manage to smoke, covered in tattoos and go abroad on holiday every year, 3 things i can't do cos i work and have a mortgage.
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bread and margarine. Fast becoming Britain's staple diet. We shouldn't jump to conclusions about smokers and holiday takers. This is not always the case as these times there are plenty of real poor people in this country. Cameron is just to slow or to blind to see it happening, or perhaps to busy giving money to overseas to see the problem at home. Either way it exists in Britain and needs addressing quickly
You don't see many skinny 'poor' people do you?
Maybe, maybe not, but what you DO see are a lot of ignorant, rightwing, fatheaded 'people' on here making comments similar to yours.
I only comment on what I have seen and experienced. I know some parents on low incomes and welfare are good parents and they do everything for their children. What I do also see is the other side of the coin too and unlike some I don't deny that both exist.
May be getting the wrong end of the stick here, but I think Chris was addressing Lorgar's slightly nonsensical comment, John ;)
Oh I got that El Bubsio, My comment was aimed at everyone who thinks anyone on benefits is either a scrounger or A downtrodden mass. People are suffering at the moment, but also some are using the system to profit. I also don't believe that with careful management of limited resources children need to go to school hungry. I read on another news site that had a fuller report on this study that the main issue was not lack of money, but apathy by the parents in not providing a breakfast.
Have any of the knowalls commenting, noticed the charity food (soup kitchens) banks springing up around the country, at a time when the rich are getting richer? It will not be long until the tent cities arrive just like our neighbours across the pond have. Bad things happen when the wealthy are in a feeding frenzy, as the French and Russian ruling classes learned in the past.
Windows Live User
They are too engrossed in their feeding frenzy to learn from history or perhaps they didnt learn their history!
Has john noticed young kids going to school in dirty rags whilst the tattooed smoking parents stand outside the school dressed up as if their going to a party, i think not, well i see every day.
Go back to your Daily Mail Steve.
Sorry mate can't afford a paper cos my kids need food.
Sorry,have to disagree the previous posters are right there is no need for kids to go hungry nowadays.benefits are a lot more than they were when my husband was out of work our 3 children never left the house without breakfast
Exactly Diane. If things are that bad then you feed your children before yourself, any proper parent would. However some of the mothers i see certainly don't look as if they would miss a meal or three...
Well said mrs hakes....sorry, I mean Lorgar.
Diane, You're absolutely right. Benefits are far more now than they were just a few years ago. But, so is food, petrol, electricity, gas, council tax, clothing etc. There are doubtless some bad parents out there, but as with most things, they're in the vast minority. Most parents will provide as best they can for their children and themselves. I think instead of seeing this as just a case of 'they're all bad parents', we need to see this as the widespread crippling poverty that many families face on a daily basis.
Windows Live User
Here it comes........ Third World Britain...... And our politicians are to engrossed in their own wealth to see it happening
Well said, WLU.
It seems our political masters now want a 40% pay increase. We know where their priorities lie!
Steve Marshall you are so one minded its untrue. I don't work, yet I have a tattoo & take my kids to school wearing smart, expensive clothes. Guess what, I bought those clothes and got my tattoo before I was made redundant. Since then I have bought very few clothes for myself, often have no food for me to eat and while I can not get out of my phone or Virgin media contracts I have cut them back as far as possible. Doing this means my kids are always fed and clothed. People who survive comfortably on benefits ARE cheating the system. I am worse off out of work and I am claiming everything I legally can and its a struggle, so unless any of experience it please don't make comments on it. Your problem is you think you are better than me. And you are not, your just luckier.
Ha ha ha lucky you've got to be joking, maybe i done things around the right way like meet a girl, buy a house, get married then have children, i know many people who have 4,5 or 6 kids and complain that there skint whilst smoking 40 a day and showing off the new tattoo which cost them £60-£300, you might have been dealt a bad hand at the moment but I'm pretty sure overtime you'll get yourself out of this sticky situation, trust me i know I'm not better than you, priority is the name of the game and feeding and clothing your kids comes first, but i know some people are so selfish that that'll never happen.
Lazy parenting. The chippy isn't open at that time of the morning...
Ignorance must be bliss Lorgar. Tell me please; what's it like?
Well said M.V. Bridgman. these people need to wake up to the poverty people are now experiencing. Wages were stagnating BEFORE the alleged deficit (which is merely a cover for the Tories to continue the Thatcherite Project). The pure lies and caricatures these people are spouting about people 'happy to see their kids sent to school starving' are disgusting as food banks are sprouting up in every area while the rich are still caning it in. I agree with John except a revolution would be a good thing.
the fascists are out today
another braindead left-wing .waste of space
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Emma's so full of...charm. Thought she'd developed a brain cell when I supported her comment about Starbucks, but no, it must have been a flash of light passing through her head. Nothing worse than a working class Tory, or could that be BNP rightwing nutter?
no chris i am not a tory. the difference with you and me is that i am for the WORKING class, not the scrounging class.
The rich exported the traditional jobs of the British working class abroad to low wage economies and then they label the unemployed scroungers, numpties such as Emma are a bit sad.
I agree, John. She doesn't have the mental capacity to realise her 'scroungers' are actually unemployed working class people and she falls for the Tory trick of 'divide and rule' setting one group of working class people against another while they laugh all the way to the bank. She says she's 'Labour', well, it's one more indication that Labour is just the pale pink Tory Party if she is the calibre of support they are attracting.
Sorry, she didn't actually say she's Labour, did she? BNP then.
Totally agree - lazy and non-caring parents are to blame
Chris, there is something far worse than a working class Tory - class warriers
No, I don't think so. I'd much rather be a 'class warrior' than a working class Tory any day of the week. And don't pretend NOT to be a class warrior yourself. Look at your comment - 'lazy, non-caring parents' etc. That would be people on benefits or low incomes you're referring to...h'mm wonder which class they are in? Nothing to do with mass unemployment caused by the rich bankers and fatcat financiers, of course, in your world.
And now the gobsmiths want a huge pay rise, I hope a large meteorite hits the Houses of Parliament when they are debating that matter.