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52.3% OF PRIMARY KIDS IN WEST LOTHIAN RECEIVING FREE SCHOOL MEALS

52.3% OF PRIMARY KIDS IN WEST LOTHIAN RECEIVING FREE SCHOOL MEALS

Published date : 17 March, 2020

 

The number of primary aged pupils receiving free schools meals in West Lothian has risen from 14.1% to 52.3% in the last decade saving working families hundreds of pounds a year, according to new analysis.

The latest figures, released by the Scottish Parliament’s Information Centre (SPICe), show that nationally just over 53% of primary pupils were registered for free school meals in 2019 – a substantial jump from 2009 when just 16.7% of kids were registered.

The SPICe analysis has also estimated that local families are saving £450 a year for each child, thanks to the Scottish Government’s commitment to extend free school meals for more pupils across Scotland.

In 2015, the Scottish Government introduced free school meals for all pupils in primary 1 to 3 – with evidence showing initiatives like this can help close the education attainment gap while improving the performance of children from low income backgrounds.

The number of secondary pupils registered for free schools in West Lothian has also steadily increased in the last decade – rising from 10.5% in 2009 to 15.2% in 2019.

Welcoming the news, MSP for Almond Valley, Angela Constance said:

“Free school meals are an important part of ensuring that every child gets the best start in life but it’s also a huge financial help to working families. This policy has been a huge relief for many families across West Lothian at a time where household budgets are tight – saving parents over £450 a year for each child.

“While the Scottish Government’s  commitment to double the provision of free childcare for all three and four year olds is also saving young families round £4,500 a year. There’s still a lot to do in reducing poverty and inequality in Scotland – but progressive policies like this are keeping more cash in the pockets of hard working families here in Almond Valley.

ENDS

Notes:

Figures from SPICe:

 

 

 
       
 

A

B

C

D

Local Authority

2009

2019

2009

2019c

Aberdeen City                 

13.7

51.6

7.6

12.3

Aberdeenshire                 

7.0

47.5

4.6

6.6

Angus                         

13.2

50.3

9.4

11.6

Argyll & Bute                  

10.5

49.3

8.2

11.6

Clackmannanshire              

20.1

52.3

16.7

17.5

Dumfries & Galloway           

12.8

50.3

7.8

13.2

Dundee City                   

26.7

59.0

19.2

25.5

East Ayrshire1                

19.1

54.4

13.9

17.5

East Dunbartonshire            

7.2

47.7

6.7

8.6

East Lothian                  

11.3

49.0

7.9

8.3

East Renfrewshire             

7.9

45.9

7.1

6.9

Edinburgh City

17.7

50.8

11.9

10.6

Falkirk                       

15.9

51.6

12.1

13.0

Fife1                       

18.2

53.9

13.2

16.4

Glasgow City1,2         

32.3

70.8

26.7

30.7

Highland                      

13.5

49.4

9.5

11.3

Inverclyde                    

23.1

56.5

17.4

22.5

Midlothian                    

15.7

52.8

11.6

13.0

Moray                         

9.9

49.0

8.1

9.8

Na h-Eileanan Siar                   

9.0

47.0

7.9

8.0

North Ayrshire                

22.4

55.5

15.6

20.6

North Lanarkshire             

18.4

53.0

14.0

15.9

Orkney                

7.9

46.2

5.4

8.4

Perth & Kinross                

8.2

47.6

5.5

7.5

Renfrewshire                  

16.8

53.8

12.0

16.2

Scottish Borders1            

9.5

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