Mum Tasha Jones says she’s struggling due to the cost of living crisis as Boris looks to ditch proposals made by food tsar Henry Dimbleby over free school meals
Mum-of-four Tasha Jones says free school meals are vital for her family due to the rocketing cost of living.
With daughters aged two and six, and sons aged 14 and nine, a hot meal means the eldest three can have a lighter evening meal – which saves on energy costs.
Tasha, 39, has £60-a-week for food, and that makes it hard to cook hot meals every night.
It comes as more than a million poor kids will now stay hungry, while the cost of living crisis continues to batter struggling families.
Boris Johnson looks likely to snubs a plea to extend free school meals to all children in poverty.
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The PM is understood to be ditching proposals made by food tsar Henry Dimbleby, which included extending free school meals to all children in Universal Credit homes.
His new food strategy for England today will contain little to tackle child hunger or soaring prices, which sparked fury last night.
No10 insisted it would “keep free school eligibility under review”.
But the PM was accused of standing by as children go hungry.
Full-time mum Tasha, of Swindon, Wilts., was part of Save the Children’’s ‘Mums on a Mission’ campaign to improve childcare for working mums in the UK.
“If kids are on free school meals, they may receive a pupil premium as well, depending on your local authority,” she said.
“That premium is good for the school. It helps fund trips, music lessons, and uniforms, so it is not just about the meal.
“My eldest also has music lessons which we could not afford without the pupil premium.
“During the week Monday to Friday, they have a hot meal at school and in the evening we have sandwiches and crackers and cheese to help with the food bill.
“The £60-a-week budget is all we can afford at the moment because of the cost of petrol. I was lucky, I am paying £79-a-month for energy, I am so pleased that the deal is until May, 2023.”
She added: “We really notice during the holidays. Having to provide meals twice a day is a real struggle, it makes such a difference.
“I would recommend that everyone apply for the pupil premium, even if you are not sure if you are eligible for it.”
Former WeightWatchers consultant Tasha’s household income amounts to around £1600-a-month including Universal Credit and her partner’s wage as a labourer.
She added: “I think that all families with children at school should be able to get a free school meal.
“The cost of living increase does not just hit people on benefits, it affects everybody, it stops children going hungry.
“While they are in mainstream education, they should get a free school meal.”