asked the President of the Board of Education what steps he proposes to take to ensure that all county education authorities recognise the urgency of establishing school canteens or of providing some means by which dinners brought by children can be warmed up, especially during the winter?
As a result of the circulars issued by the Board during the past three years, local education authorities are fully alive to the importance of establishing school canteens in county areas, and I am satisfied that authorities generally are doing their utmost. In the absence of canteens the Board have always encouraged authorities, where practicable, to make arrangements for warming food brought by children who have to travel some distance to reach school.
What percentage of children are now receiving school meals?
There is a Question very shortly, the answer to which will give the figures.
Is it not a fact that a great deal of the difficulty is caused through lack of staff and cooking facilities, and can the right hon. Gentleman not look into these matters and arrange for facilities to be made available, particularly in the country districts?
Yes, Sir, we recently issued new provisions for this, and I hope they will have some effect.