Thousands of schoolchildren across Doncaster eligible for free meals during holidays

The meals will be funded by Doncaster Council Credit: ITV Calendar

Thousands of children across Doncaster could benefit from free school meals during half term week.

The Mayor of Doncaster, Ros Jones says the council will fund meal vouchers for children aged four and upwards who attend schools in the borough. Schools are contacting eligible families.

The vouchers will be for £15 per child per week and more than 11,000 children are eligible to benefit. It will cost the council around £160,000 if all eligible families accept them.

Mayor Ros Jones said she wanted to ensure that children and parents and carers who needed additional support over the half term holiday were given it independent of any national decisions.

I felt it the right thing to do to ensure that children who rely on free school meals during term time do not go hungry over the school holidays. The Coronavirus pandemic has been difficult for everyone and Doncaster is facing further restrictions from tomorrow when we go into Very High or Tier 3.

Ros Jones, Mayor of Doncaster

She added: "I appreciate that families are finding it difficult already and the current situation is making it even harder for people who are struggling to support their children.

"So I have agreed that free school meal vouchers will continue over the holidays and the council will fund it. We have been in touch with schools to organise this at some pace."

It comes after MPs rejected a Labour motion on Wednesday 21 October to offer free school meals during Easter 2021, by 322 votes to 261.

The motion was supported by footballer Marcus Rashford, who has been campaigning to provide free school meals for disadvantaged children during the holidays.