Hampshire school dinners set for 15p increase

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THE price of school dinners is set for an increase under new proposals.

Hampshire County Council is to up the cost of freshly-cooked two-course meals in schools from £2.15 to £2.30.

If approved on Tuesday by the council’s executive member for children’s services, Councillor Keith Mans, the new measures would take effect from September 2018.

The council said that the move would bring the price per meal in line with many other authorities across the country.

Currently, the Department for Education’s funding for Universal Infant Free School Meals is set at £2.30.

Ahead of the meeting on Wednesday, Cllr Mans said: ‘There are a number of factors that I will be sure to take into account when making a decision on whether or not to increase the price of school meals in Hampshire.

‘I am keen that school meals remain affordable but there is a balance to be struck between being able to continue to maintain such prices and meeting the increasing and unavoidable costs associated with providing these meals.

‘In any final decision that I make, I will want to ensure the agreed price is manageable and fair to all.’

The council provides the meals through HC3S, the authority’s catering business – which cooked and served over 14 million school meals in Hampshire’s primary and secondary schools.

The meals meet Department for Education standards.

The meeting at The Castle, Winchester, takes place from 2pm.