Renfrewshire Education and Children’s Service Convener has welcomed an announcement at the beginning of the week that the Scottish Government to extend free school meal fund.

At the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic when schools were advised to close Renfrewshire Council moved to ensure those pupils who qualified for free school meals continued to receive their entitlement.

Renfrewshire Council put in place a direct cash payment to parents and carers of entitled pupils as a means of supporting families who are under considerable financial pressure. A move that was commended by the Child Poverty Action Group and other leading charities who advocate direct cash payments to parents in lieu of vouchers or pack lunches.

Following the announcement from First Minister Nicola Sturgeon Education and Children’s Service Convener Jim Paterson was able to confirm that this payment will continue through the summer break and be reviewed when Schools return in August.

The SNP Councillor, said: “In Renfrewshire we had always planned to extend free school meal payments over the summer break and it is fantastic that the First Minister has confirmed that financial support would be made available to Councils to help cover the costs.

“Free school meals are a vital to the health and wellbeing of children and we are keen to support families as much as we can during these difficult times.”

By Ricky Kelly

Main writer for Renfrewshire News