Healthy Eating

Owlchef

Halfway School encourages all pupils to eat a healthy diet , and to exercise regularly.

School dinners are changing for the better.You should have noticed a difference in what’s on offer , with healthier foods being served in the school restaurant. Our kitchen has received a Food Hygeine Rating of (5), and also the Catering Monitoring Gold Award presented by Carmarthenshire County Council.

For just £2.50. per day, primary pupils receive a two course main meal to include a vegetarian option and a dessert.   Fresh Fruit and drinking water is also readily available in all schools.

Our menu cycles run on a 3 week rotational basis which are changed twice a year in May and October to allow for seasonal variances.

School meals must be paid in advance to the School Meals Clerk at  school.  To allow for convenience, payment can be made on a weekly, fortnightly or termly basis either by cheque (payable to Carmarthenshire County Council) or by cash.

All of our menus comply with Healthy Eating in Schools (Nutritional Standards and Requirements) (Wales) Regulations 2013 which became legislative in September 2013.  These food regulations are designed to reduce the amount of fat, sugar and salt served in school food.  By carefully sourcing reduced fat and/or salt ingredients and adopting good practices such as oven baking and steaming, we can continue to provide pupils with traditional favourite dishes such as traditional roast dinners, Homemade Curry and Rice and a variety of Pasta dishes and desserts to include Homemade Sponge and Custard and Rice Pudding.

The following table summarises the Nutritional Standards so that you know what you can expect from our carefully planned menus:

 Food Standards for school lunches
Fruit and vegetables Not less than 2 portions per day per child (at least one must be vegetables or salad, and at least one must be fruit).
Oily fish On the school lunch menu at least once every two weeks.
Deep fried potato products Potato and potato products cooked in fat/oils in the school kitchen or during manufacture must not be served more than twice a week.
Deep fried products Other food items (other than potatoes) cooked in fat oils in the school kitchen or during manufacture must not be served more than twice a week.
Manufactured meat products Should not be reformed/reconstituted.
Bread (without spread) A variety of breads should be encouraged including wholemeal bread.
Oils & Spreads Only oils and spreads high in polyunsaturated and/or monounsaturated fats can be used
Confectionery and Savoury snacks Not to be made available
Salt Not added to vegetables during cooking.  Restrict or remove salt from recipes and replace with appropriate and acceptable herbs and spices.  Not available at lunch tables or at the service counter.

Free school meals

Free School Meals are only available to children whose parents/guardian receives one of the following benefits:

  • Income Support
  • Job Seekers Allowance (Income Based)
  • Support under part V1 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
  • Guaranteed element of State Pension Credit
  • Child Tax Credit, but DO NOT receive Working Tax Credit, and their annual income  (as assessed by the Inland Revenue) does not exceed £16,190 (from 6th April 2014) unless Working Tax Credit is part of a four week run on.
  • Income related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Universal Credit

Please note: Children in receipt of one of the benefits themselves are also entitled to Free School Meals.

How do I apply for Free School Meals?

Application Renewals

If you are already claiming free school meals for your child, there is no need to re-apply for each new school year this entitlement will automatically follow your child to the next stage of their education (e.g. in September).  If this involves moving to new school (e.g. moving from primary to secondary school) the new school will be advised of your entitlement without the need to re-apply).

If your child transfers to another school within Carmarthenshire at any other time  or for any other reason again entitlement will automatically follow your child.  Please notify the Education authority of a change in school.

What happens if my circumstances change?

You should notify the Free School Meal Office if:

  • You start work
  • Your benefit changes
  • You change address
  • You have another child starting school for the first time
  • The child no longer lives with you

Failure to notify the Authority in any changes to your benefit/income may mean you have to pay for any meals taken whilst you were not eligible.

Packed Lunch

If your child prefers packed lunches here are some tips to help make the packed lunch healthier too.Start with starchy foods-always include foods like bread, rolls , rice , pasta or potato.Add a portion of food rich in protein , such as chicken , lean meat , fish , egg or cheese.Try to add a portion of fruit and a portion of vegetables to help towards their 5-a-day.Add a healthy snack like yoghurt , currant bun or rice pudding.

Remember always include a drink. Water , milk , pure fruit juice  are good choices.Lunchboxes should be kept cool-ideally use an insulated lunchbox with ice packs or a frozen carton of juice to keep it cool.If sandwiches are prepared the previous evening , always store them in a fridge overnight. And don’t forget to keep the packed lunch cool at school.