15th March, 2021.

The Department for Education have announced what they are referring to as an extension of funding for school breakfast clubs in England. They say £24 million will be available to continue government support for school breakfast provision for a further 2 years and have put a detailed contract out to tender.

Magic Breakfast and Family Action are co-delivering the current school breakfast contract for the Department for Education, which we named the National School Breakfast Programme (NSBP) and which, at its peak, reached around 375,000 children with a healthy breakfast every school day. The contract started in March 2018 and is due to finish at the end of July 2021, having been extended several times and adapted during the pandemic to take account of lockdowns and school closures. The terms of the new contract, announced today, are significantly different to those of the existing National School Breakfast Programme. 

Reacting to the news of the new tender, Alysa Remtulla, Head of Policy and Campaigns at Magic Breakfast, said: 

"Magic Breakfast welcomes any new funding for school breakfast provision as we continue on our mission to ensure that no child in the UK is too hungry to learn. The funding announced by the DfE today, however, falls short of the proposed School Breakfast Bill which Magic Breakfast is campaigning for. The DfE are proposing to support approximately 2,500 schools with short-term funding, however, we believe there are approximately 8,700 schools in disadvantaged areas of England with children at risk of hunger who would benefit from permanent and secure breakfast funding, as set out in the School Breakfast Bill.  

Our priority continues to be ensuring that a government funded school breakfast programme includes expert support for schools to ensure that every child at risk of hunger in those schools receives a healthy breakfast, delivered without barrier or stigma. We look forward to examining the DfE tender document more closely over the coming days, to understand the detail behind this funding announcement."