Opposition councillors vow to fight planned Nottinghamshire school meal price rise
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Members of the Alliance, who represent areas including Hucknall, Sutton and Eastwood, have vowed to do everything they can to stop the rise, saying it will impact some of the poorest residents in the county.
Under the proposals put forward, council-supplied school meals will rise by £2 a week – an extra 40p per day.
Opposition councillors say this means school dinners in Nottinghamshire will now cost £14.75 a week and costs have risen 28 per cent in the last three years.
Coun Francis Purdue-Horan, a child poverty campaigner and vice-chairman of the county’s children and families’ select committee, also questioned the timing of the announcement – made a week after children went back to school.
He said: “If the Conservatives have their way, the price rises will kick in on October 16.
"All the evidence shows child poverty is worse with families who just lose out on free school meals due to the low eligibility level.
“The timing of this decision is also scandalous. The Tories at County Hall left it until our children went back to school to announce this.
“They are forcing children to pay towards financial incompetence. They crashed the economy last year, drove up inflation and are now stealing from parent’s purses.”
They have also started the formal procedure at County Hall in an attempt to reverse the decision as they claim the decision was made with no consultation with parents or schools and cite a number of reasons why the decision should be reversed.
Speaking when the announcement was made, Coun John Cottee, council cabinet member for communities, said: “Rising inflation has a big impact on us all and we know it’s been a tough time for local families.
“High food and staff costs have caused major financial pressures for our catering service team, which we have taken into account when reviewing our school meal prices.
“Unfortunately, we have little option but to propose a moderate increase for schools.”