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Hiya everyone!

 

A friend of mine called me the other day because her school is charging her £1.75 a week for milk. Her daughter has just turned 4 and started Upper Foundation/Reception.

 

This doesn't sound right to me, bus as I'm new to the job I dont really know. She's not too keen on paying though, as it works out very expensive.

 

I know at our school we ask for a voluntary £1 a week to help with baking/ food tasting and bread for toast,but this is voluntary and I'm sure none of it goes to milk.

 

I thought children had free milk, at least until they started Year 1?

 

Can anyone shed some light?

 

Thank you.

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I'm not sure that schools access free milk, although I do think they are entitled to. Maybe some schools get their free milk and the ones that don't choose not to because of the administration, storage ad management of handing it out.

 

 

did a google and found this information which may be very useful for your friend to take along to her school.

 

SCHOOL MILK .CO.UK

 

Peggy

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Children are entitled to one third of a pint of milk, which settings can claim back. I know some areas have schemes where the milk is free at the point of delivery. This has been discussed on the Forum before, so it might be worth a search.

 

I'm not sure what the arrangements are for children in reception/foundation units though - might be different.

 

Maz

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Reception children should have free milk, which is a benefit they are entitled to. I have heard of some schools who don't claim it, but that seems very wrong to me. Their entitlement ceases on their 5th birthday, and then they have to pay if they wish to continue.

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I dont know of any school in our area that claims free milk- to be honest I didn't think they could- as they get free fruit, one piece per child. All the pre-school settings claim the milk

 

 

Under 5's are entitled to free milk, over 5's who are entitled to free school meals are also entitled to free milk.

 

Some schools, for whatever reason, do not administer this entitlement, so I think this is a subject that parents would have to discuss with their individual school.

The link I put in above details the different schemes schools can run, although there is one part of it that suggests schools charge parents a subsidised fee for milk (for over 5's not entitled to free milk) which is ok if it is just for the milk, but then suggests that this is also a way to raise extra funds for other resources, which I don't personally think is ok.

 

 

Peggy

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I think under fives are entitled to free milk...........

 

But maybe a school has to access this service???

 

We ask for a voluntary contribution of £1 per week from our nursery parents this is to buy breads, etc whatever we have alongside our fruit and drink in the morning.

 

What we do tell them is any surplus cash is used then to buy seeds,bulbs, ingredients, books and things to support the topic and this tuck money has helped us buy a second digital camera!

For staff this is a quicker easier way to get money back for buying things for the setting......... if you put a receipt in at school petty cash can take 2/3 months to get it back to you!!!!!

 

Huh!

 

Now I have gone on and on about tuck money, though and the question was only about milk!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

Sorry :o

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our local school won't supply the free milk,'because it's unfair to give it to some of the class and not others, and it's too time-consuming to have to administer collecting in money from those parents of children who are willing to pay'............which personally, i think is awful.....they wouldn't allow one of the parents to administer the scheme either, on grounds of confidentiality!

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Our school claims free fruit instead. It must be an issue if when the child reaches 5 their free milk stops and parents may be reluctant to start playing for it. There are 68 in reception classes so would become very expensive if parents didn't pay. xD And you could say "you've not paid you can't have any." :o

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My children's school has free fruit and free milk (for under fives). When the child reaches their fifth birthday parents can choose to pay or not, and the children don't all have milk, even when it is free. However the charges are nothing like those quoted by the OP. I haven't paid for a year but I seem to remember it was about £1 for the week.

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The free fruit has nothing to do with the free school milk, they are not connected and the children in school should should be getting both. The free fruit for 4 to 6 year olds is part of the Government's 5 a day scheme and is funded by the National Lottery. The fruit scheme was rolled out over the country bit by bit.

We did as others do, charge a weekly nursery/reception fund and we clearly explain what it is for, a voluntary contribution towards baking, extra items for Christmas, craft work and a daily snack etc. I think that the milk stopping on the child's 5th birthday can be got around by then paying for the milk out of that fund or alternatively, as some do, putting the milk in jugs and using cups for everyone. We provided children in the infants with the option of the subsidised scheme, and there were also other healthy snack choices run by the school kitchen.

I think not claiming children's entitlement to state(EU) benefits is very wrong, and I would certainly be asking the school what they are up to. Would they deny free school meals to families because of the admin problems?! If the Government deems that these children are entitled to this, and also those on free school meals, then a school shouldn't be able to hold it from them. It is not a huge problem once the paperwork is in place, and just becomes another duty for the admin staff. Imagine the uproar if it was applied to any other state benefit. Many of these benefits are to help eradicate child poverty and improve public health. 1 in 3 children in this country live in poverty. The target to eradicate this is 2020 :o Schools are on very dodgy ground here making these choices for their children. This makes me very cross!

Rant over xD

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Sarah,

 

This has certainly been interesting to read and I would be keen to know the outcome with your friend!

 

What does seem to happen is schools charge parents for other 'perks' - could it be that although they call it milk money it actually goes towards a variety of things?

 

Having said that, as Jacquie has stated, these schemes exist for a reason and the school should really ensure that they enter into these for the health and welfare of the children in their care. :o

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To claim the free school milk at my children's school, all parents are given the Milk leaflet in their welcome pack and it is then completely up to the parent to organise. I have to say that the milk company is completely inefficient and I have not bothered claiming the milk for my youngest who has just started reception (he's an Oct birthday anyway) as when my eldest could have milk I seemed to be constantly on the phone to them as they always seemed to get the order wrong.

 

They did do milkshake (20p) and toast (10p) for a while, which the children loved but this has now stopped, as the children stopped eating their dinners!!

 

The school also does the free fruit scheme.

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At our school only nursery children are entitled to free milk, as soon as they are reception children they have to pay £5 a term. I think this isnt bad for a terms milk, there are only a few who dont pay and unfortunately they cant have milk , well unless some one is away and there are some spares.

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Wierd isn't it - in all my years of teaching I've never worried about milk, it was always there and I always had enough cartons whether they were 5 or not!! It just turned up by magic every other day!!!!

As did the fruit!!!In fact we had enough fruit for the adults too.

Cxx

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Well now this is all very interesting as I honestly thought they weren't claiming the milk because of the fruit. There are at least 3 local primaries I know of here that dont give out milk. As for the fruit, frequently when I am picking up from school there is a large container of fruit outside the office, that hasn't been used.

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