Question 4 - Decision Making Exercise - Report
I am an advisor to the Scottish Government and I have been requested to comment on whether the proposal regarding free school meals should be accepted or rejected. Based on the information provided via the sources I recommend that free school meals should be introduced.
Care through education
I feel that free school meals should be introduced as, correctly pointed out by Kirsten Marshall (Poverty Action Group spokesperson), "the school lunch is the only nourishing, cooked meal of the day" (A). I agree that whilst children are in education the school have a duty of care and providing for those who cannot always provide for themselves falls into the care category.
Those entitled not registering?
I feel strongly that based on source (A), free schools meals should in fact be provided for every pupil not just those who cannot provide for themselves as a healthy meal would allow pupils to "benefit from their education". If every pupil was offered the free school meal it "would remove the stigma that affects the uptake of free meals in this country".
A survey allowed people to see that the majority would agree to every pupil receiving this meal, 96% agreeing parents, teachers, councils, poverty organisations and even health professionals. (BK)
As pointed out again by Kirsten Marshall the cost would not be small but would be a positive investment in Scotland's health. I feel that the investment can only be positive and it will even run down some NHS costs as there would be lower poor health admissions from the next generation who receive free meals as the project supports healthily living education also. (BK)(A)
I disagree with the view of David Robertson (Newspaper editorial), as families do not always listen to the advice given through policies (B) "The needy families of Scotland will not be best served by expensive gestures, but rather by policies which target help...