Packed Lunch Policy


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To ensure that all packed lunches brought from home and consumed in school (or on school trips) provide the pupils with healthy, safe and nutritious food.

Schools are required to positively promote the health and well-being of their pupils. Work around healthy eating is a high priority of the Every Child Matters agenda.

The content of lunchboxes needs to reflect the requirement of schools to meet minimum food and nutrition standards for school meals.

Packed lunches should provide a nutritious, balanced diet to support the child’s learning and development.


To ensure that packed lunches (brought in from home) reflect the standards for school meals introduced in September 2006. Please visit for more information.

To encourage a high nutritional quality of packed lunches in schools and healthy eating habits of children at lunchtimes, that can influence health and well-being.

To further raise the profile of healthy eating throughout the school.

To encourage healthy eating habits from an early age and improve the overall nutrition of pupils.

What the school will provide:

an appropriate area where pupils who choose to bring packed lunches can eat and where possible, they will be able to sit with those having school dinners.

a storage area / facilities for packed lunch bags, in the most convenient and appropriate place possible. However, the school cannot provide cooled storage areas and therefore cannot take legal responsibility for foods prepared at home and then brought into school.

drinking water for pupils who request it.

The school will, within reason, send any uneaten packed lunch food items back home. The rationale for this is that parents can also monitor what their child has consumed.

during the day and then raise any concerns over their child’s food intake with the school.


Suggestions for food to include in a healthy packed lunch:

  • Meat, fish, eggs or other source of non- dairy protein (eg lentils, beans, soya or hummus) every day (usually as part of a sandwich, wrap, roll or salad).
  • Oily fish such as pilchards, tuna or salmon These foods provide protein for growth
  • A starchy food such as bread, pasta, rice, potatoes or other types of cereals every day. These starchy foods are a healthy source of energy.
  • Dairy food such as milk, cheese, yoghurt or fromage frais These foods provide calcium for healthy bones and teeth.
  • A drink – water is best followed by milk (semi-skimmed), unsweetened fresh fruit juice, diluted fresh fruit juice, drinking yoghurt or dairy based smoothies.
  • Cereal bars rather than cakes and biscuits
  • Pretzels, seeds, fruit, crackers and cheese and vegetable or bread sticks with a dip.

 Packed Lunches should not include:

  • Fizzy / highly sugared drinks in cartons, bottles or cans.
  • Sweets / confectionery.
  • Chocolate spread as a filling for sandwiches.
  • Chewing gum.
  • Energy drinks.
  • Nuts or nut products because of the danger to other children with allergies.
  • Hot food – due to the health and safety concerns relating to food poisoning and scalding. Hot food must be kept at a temperature of not less than 75 degrees Celsius in order to prevent the development of dangerous bacteria. The school has no facilities to maintain or monitor required temperatures for hot packed lunches. Staff and other children are at risk of scalding if hot foods/soups are spilled in the dining room.

 Special Diets

The school recognises that some pupils may require special diets due to verified medical conditions. In this case, parents are urged to inform the school and be responsible in ensuring that packed lunches are as healthy as possible.

For these reasons, children must eat their own and no-one else’s packed lunch.

This policy has the full ownership of staff and governors of St Teresa’s Catholic Primary School