More children in Inverclyde are taking up free school meals, new figures show – with uptake of those eligible increasing from 67.4% in 2015 to 70% this year.
The SNP extended free school meals to all children in P1-3 in 2015, a policy benefitting around 135,000 children and delivering savings for families of at least £330 a year for each eligible child.
The Healthy Living Survey 2016 also showed that the number of primary school pupils in Inverclyde receiving at least 120 minutes of PE has increased from 67% in 2012 to 100% this year.
Commenting, SNP MSP Stuart McMillan said:
“The SNP want to do all we can to make sure every young person has the best start in life. The delivery of free school meals for all primary 1-3 pupils underlines our commitment to doing all we can to support the development of our young people and tackle inequalities in our society, including the scourge of child poverty – and I’m delighted that uptake has increased year-on-year.
“The latest Healthy Living Survey has shown a welcome increase in the numbers of primary schools reaching the target of 120 minutes of physical education across Inverclyde, helping to ensure our children live active and healthy lifestyles at a crucial stage of their development. Being active in childhood helps our children learn and encourages healthy habits, so these figures show that the SNP Government is working hard to make Scotland a healthier place to live.
“Ensuring that children from all backgrounds are able to access the right food and stay active will help in the Government’s efforts to give every child the best start in life. By continuing to focus on education and young people throughout this parliament, the SNP Government will ensure that Scotland continues to become a healthier and more active nation for generations to come.”