CHILDREN at Holy Rood Junior School are officially healthy eaters after being presented with a Food for Life Partnership Bronze award this week.

The award was given by Oliver Dowding, council member of lead partner the Soil Association, during a school assembly on Wednesday afternoon.

The school is working with the Food for Life partnership to transform their food culture and that of the local community. It aims to connect the children with climate-friendly and healthy food which Food for Life has now recognised with this initial bronze award.

As part of the Bronze award scheme, Holy Rood Junior School serves up seasonal school meals – 75 per cent of which are freshly prepared by experienced school catering manager, Kerry Ockley.

The pupils are also given the opportunity to participate in the food growing activities and the cooking, and are involved in making improvements and changes to their own school menu.

Going one step further, the school also allows each pupil the chance to visit farms during his or her time at school to understand how and where their food is produced.

Dave Richardson, a skilled and enthusiastic gardener, as well as a member of staff, has helped the pupils further by encouraging them to get involved with managing their own school garden over the last two years – voted to be the best in Swindon by the Swindon Allotment Society.

Headteacher Tony McAteer said: “We are delighted with this achievement and believe that working towards it has enabled us to give the children the right messages regarding issues such as healthy eating and sustainability.”

The Food for Life partnership has created a vast network of 5,000 schools across England, wholly committed in supporting schools to provide fresh, nutritious meals while educating both teachers and pupils of the importance of healthy eating and where their food really comes from.

The initiative is led by the Soil Association, and it is free for schools in England to enrol and provides a wealth of resources to support their progress through the award framework.

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