Do the school food standards apply to my school?
The standards apply to some schools and can be used as best practice for others. Which is which? - find out more here.
The school food standards were developed to get children eating more healthily at school, and to get schools offering better quality food which meets minimum requirements for nutrition. They’re important because eating well at school improves children’s nutrition and health, their concentration and behaviour in class and their attainment. Since the standards were introduced, the number of children having school meals has climbed every year.
The standards apply to the food and drink provided in local authority maintained primary, secondary, special schools and pupil referral units in England. They’re also best practice for any school wanting to meet children’s nutritional needs and help boost attainment in doing so.
So, the school food standards:
- do apply to the food and drink provided in local authority maintained primary, secondary, special schools and pupil referral units in England
- do apply to sixth forms that are part of secondary schools, (even those in a separate building or on a different site), but do not apply to the sixth form colleges of further education colleges
- do apply to after school clubs run on school premises
- do not apply to academies or free schools
- do not apply to private schools
- do not apply to food and drink provided after 6pm, or during weekends or school holidays
- do not apply to nursery schools or day care settings, who can instead use the Voluntary Food and Drink Guidelines for Early Years Settings in England to plan meals and snacks.
There is much more detail about the what rules applies to which school in our frequently asked questions here.
Read a detailed description of the school food standards.