School meal providers in Sandwell have pledged to go further than the government's School Food Standards.

School meals are already offering children healthier options including more fruit and vegetables, food lower in fat, salt, sugar and healthier drinks. More parents and carers will also be given the opportunity to come to taste school food.

Sandwell’s schools have gone a step further by running healthier cooking classes and creating vegetable gardens to engage children and families. They are also sharing Change 4 Life guidance for healthier packed lunches and working to improve the overall lunchtime experience for children.

Councillor Elaine Costigan, cabinet member for public health and protection said: “It’s imperative that children are given healthy meals while at school and I’m delighted the school meals providers already do that.

“It’s great there are plans for more initiatives in partnership with the council, schools and meal providers. This will make sure not only children, but the whole family will get involved and learn more about healthy eating.”

Sandwell Council is working in collaboration with SIPs, Dolce, Autograph, Chartwells, CMC, AIP and Cityserve who provide meals in schools across the borough.

Councillor Simon Hackett, cabinet member for children’s services said: “These initiatives go much further than just providing a healthy school meal. I hope they will help children and families learn about healthy eating so they can use this knowledge at home.”