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New free school milk requirements from January 2015

A new obligation is coming into force as of 1 January relating to the provision of milk in schools which have decided to offer it to pupils. This is being brought in as part of the revised school food standards and NAHT is concerned that many schools may have overlooked the implication of this change.

From 1 January 2015 the school food standards require schools which provide food and drink on the premises to ensure that lower fat milk or lactose reduced milk is available to children for drinking at least once a day during school hours. Whole milk can be provided for pupils up to the end of the school year in which they reach age five. After that milk must be lower fat or lactose-reduced.

The DfE have advised that there is some help towards the cost of providing milk for schools who take part in the EU school milk subsidy scheme. There is also the nursery milk scheme, operated by the Department of Health, which provides free milk to children under the age of five at participating schools and childcare settings.
The new requirements set out in the DfE advice on school food which can be found at www.gov.uk/government/publications/school-food.  
This obligation applies across all school phases including secondary schools.

Page Published: 23/12/2014