Saturday, November 28, 2009

Merton Council Children and Young Person Plan 2010

I spent yesterday morning with key staff from Merton Childrens's services and members of voluntary groups being consulted on the priorities for children and young people. The authority have to produce a plan which they publish.

One of their key priorities is reducing obesity. Merton's rates are above avaerage. As you would expect I made the case for Merton to ensure every secondary school student will have the time and space to eat a meal every day which is both tasty and freshly prepared. There was no disagreement but there was no clear agreement on how we make that happen. Tom Proctor was there from the contracts department and I know he is really doing his bit to ensure we get better food provision but the elephant in the room was how we persuade the Heads to look at their timetabling so all kids get a chance to eat in a civivlised way.

After we finished we had a lovely lunch and of course we had a table and chair for each person, enough time to eat and we didn't have to choose between eating or going to see a collegue. The food did n't run out and nobody made us stand in line for 15 mins. How different from a secondary school lunch at a Merton school!

The next step for us is to produce a written submission for the Childrens and young person plan to see if we can get our secondary school aims enshrined. We are meeting with the contracts department on friday 4 Dec to look at the timetable for going out to tender for a new catering company. We now have governors from each of the secondary schools who are deeply unhappy with the food to come on to a secondary school sub committee. 2010 is going to be the year Merton secondary school meals get dramatically better.

We are going to have to return to some good old fashioned campaigning to speed things up! Please join us by clicking here

If you have any points you would like us to raise about any Merton School dinner issue, primary or secondary, let me know by Thursday 3 Dec.