Children that are not eating a nutritional breakfast or no breakfast at all, are in higher risk jeopardizing their academic progress at school.

Research conducted by The Institute for Fiscal Studies found that children with empty tummies will have reduced concentration and behavioral differences in class.

”The research is quite shocking, it shows that if a child has not had a healthy nutritious breakfast before they start school, they’re losing two months a year in equivalent of their academic progress.” says David Holmes, the chief executive of family poverty charity Family Action.

Swinton’s Co-op Academy high school has heard this message loud and clear and is the first school in Salford to introduce a free breakfast club, that provides students with unlimited, healthy and nutritional breakfasts.

The school’s breakfast club is part of the National School Breakfast Program and is ran by charities Family Action and Magic Breakfast, who uses funding provided by the Department of Education.

”The focus of this program is very much on schools in more deprived areas. There are a significant number of children attending the breakfast clubs and from what we have seen through this program, there is a very high demand for it.” says David Holmes

There are now 11 schools in Salford that have signed up for the free breakfast provision since the program’s introduction in May, with many more signing up for involvement.

Nationwide there are over 955 schools that have signed up for the program since it began, with the numbers ‘increasing everyday’.

David Holmes said that Family Action: “make sure were making foods such as porridge and cereals available, but we also provide nutritionally rich bagels that are specially made for the program. We can be confident that the food were providing is of high quality, nutritious and compliant with school food standards that will give a child a great start to the day.

“It’s really exciting to be running [the program] because its amazing to be feeding so many children who clearly really need it. It will make such a difference to those children who have full tummies at the start of the day- to help them concentrate, it will help the class atmosphere and environment and will have a really positive impact on behavior in the classroom and hopefully help those children in the long term”


The National School Breakfast Program recognizes that there’s a high need for school breakfast provision in Salford and if there is any school in Salford who would like to explore options for possible support from the programme, they can email Liz Holmes on:

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