CRWIA Stage 2
The CRWIA – key questions
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Article 3 Best interest of the child
The best interests of the child must be a top priority in all decisions and actions that affect children.
Article 24(2)(c) Health and health services
Every child has the right to the best possible health.Governments should combat disease and malnutrition through the provision of adequate nutritious foods and clean drinking-water, taking into consideration the dangers and risks of environmental pollution
The proposed 2020 regulations will replace the the existing regulations on the nutritional requirements for food and drink in schools and bring school food and drink provision closer towards the Scottish Dietary Goals which are based on the most up to date scientific evidence and dietary advice.The regulations also apply to evening meals provided to pupils who reside in a local authority run hostel.
The improvements are therefore expected to enhance children's right to healthy and nutritious food.
There is an age-related element to this policy.It covers the provision of food and drink in education authority and grant aided schools, so its impact will only be on children and young people of school age attending a publicly funded school in Scotland.It will also apply to school age pupils who are provided with an evening meal in a local authority run hostel. The policy will not impact on pre-school children or young people aged between 16 and 18 who have left school.It will not usually impact children or young people attending an independent school as they are not subject to the current Regulations however many independent schools do adopt several of the standards set out in the Regulations voluntarily.
The impact on school age children attending publicly funded schools and taking a school lunch (and/or an evening meal in a local authority run hostel) will be the same for all groups.As uptake of free school meals is higher than for paid for school meals, there may be a disproportionate positive effect on children and young people entitled to free school lunches where they chose to take them.
This policy is not considered to have any negative impacts on the rights of children and young people.
All food and drink served in education authority and grant aided schools is required to meet nutritional standards set out in legislation.The proposed 2020 regulations will make school meals (and evening meals provided to pupils who reside in local authority hostels) healthier by aligning them more closely to the Scottish Dietary Goals which are based on current scientific evidence and dietary advice.The 2020 regulations will continue to apply to all food and drink served in schools at anytime of the day and from any outlet including breakfast clubs and tuck shops.They will also continue to apply to evening meals provided to pupils residing in local authority run hostels.This will ensure that the overall health and wellbeing of children and young people will be protected.
The current school food and drink Regulations were drafted in 2008 and are based on scientific evidence and dietary advice at that time.Since then this evidence and advice has changed.The 2020 regulations will continue to help to meet the right of children and young people to be provided with nutritious food when accessing food and drink in education authority or grant aided schools in Scotland.
Using information taken from the datasets which are compiled using data collected for the Summary Statistics for Attainment, Leaver Destinations and Healthy Living Censuswe know that uptake of school lunches is higher for those eligible for free school meals than for those who pay – this means that whilst the policy will have health benefits for any child or young person who takes school lunches, it is likely to impact more strongly on those eligible for free school lunches.Given that eligibility for free school meals is based on income, children from lone parent families, low income families and some ethnic and religious minority groups are more likely to benefit from the nutrition provided by school lunches.
The Scottish Government commissioned Childrens parliament to undertake a consultation project with Children and Young People in Scotland, the results from which were used to inform the review of school food regulations.
The Scottish Government also carried out a public consultation on the proposed 2020 school food and drink Regulations.The consultation ran between 4 June and 29 August 2018.We received 1,359 responses to our consultation and the vast majority of respondent agreed with our proposals either fully, or broadly.Our report on responses to this consultation has been published online.
9. Have you involved children and young people in the development of the policy/measure?
The Scottish Government commissioned Childrens Parliament to undertake a consultation project with Children and Young People in Scotland, the results from which were used to inform the review of school food regulations.
Several organisations representing children and young people responded to our public consultation on this policy including Children in Scotland and the Childsmile National Executive.
Children and young people of school age, and their parents or carers, also had the opportunity to respond to our public consultation as individuals.