Tarbolton Primary is one of the schools benefiting from breakfast clubs
School breakfast clubs are having a positive impact on hundreds of children and young people across South Ayrshire, with more set to benefit in the coming year – thanks to South Ayrshire Council.
There's been a significant increase in the number of children and young people using breakfast clubs due to support from the Council, with the latest figures suggesting a rise of at least 25% in 2018, and numbers set to rise further in the current academic year.
As well as growing numbers using the clubs, feedback also confirms the clubs are helping to deliver improvements in wellbeing through support for our most vulnerable children and young people; having a positive impact on attendance and reduced late coming patterns; improving nurture for children and families; and increasing parental engagement.
In January, the Council waived letting fees to allow schools to roll out the system to provide pre-school meals. As a result, 25 South Ayrshire primary schools now operate breakfast clubs, five secondary schools have used Pupil Equity Funding to introduce clubs, with a fifth secondary due to launch their project in the current academic year. Of the 30 existing breakfast clubs, 21 are run by the Council, with the remainder operated by private providers.
In January 2018, it was estimated that a minimum of 614 people used breakfast clubs in South Ayrshire every week, with the figure rising to 766 in August 2018, an increase of almost 25%.
Councillor William Grant, South Ayrshire Council's Portfolio Holder for Lifelong Learning said that the commitment to reducing barriers to education would continue, "With more schools than ever before now operating breakfast clubs, we're widening access to healthy breakfasts, making life easier for hundreds of families and helping to support families in South Ayrshire bringing up children in challenging times.
"With the majority of our breakfast clubs operating free of charge or at minimal cost, we're supporting children and young people's wellbeing so they can focus on their education, while building foundations to help them realise their long-term ambitions and it's clear that this is already making a difference.
"Our sincere thanks to everyone involved in making the breakfast clubs such a success – it really is a team effort – and, of course, the hard work will continue in the months ahead as we work with all our schools and the private providers to ensure the best start to the day for our children and young people."
The full paper 'An update on Breakfast Clubs in South Ayrshire Schools' is available here.