Just fired this email off to the School Food Trust, a British government quango that runs school meal promotions in English schools …
I am writing to complain about the High School Musical promotion being run by yourselves in the school my children go to.
Under the terms of this promotion, children having school meals get a voucher every day which is entered into a draw to win tickets to High School Musical. Children who take their own lunches to school receive one voucher per week giving them only a 20% chance of winning compared to the children that have school meals.
I appreciate that the purpose of this promotion is to encourage children to have school meals but children who are entitled to free school meals also get one voucher per day, the same as those who pay. Of course, the reason for this is that you can’t discriminate against children that are entitled to free school meals but I find it strange (and unacceptable) that you are allowed to discriminate against children that aren’t entitled to free school meals and whose parents can’t afford to pay for them.
I have three children in the same school and I work full time for more than minimum wage and I am not an asylum seeker and I therefore have to pay the full cost of my children’s school meals. A school meal costs £2.05 with a drink which is £6.15 per day or £30.75 per week for my three children. In an average month that would be a bill of around £135. A packed lunch with a drink costs us less than 50p. I can’t afford the extra £100+ per month that it would cost for my children to have a school meal every day, as much as I would love them to have the extra cooked meal.
So please tell me why you can’t discriminate against children that are entitled to free school meals because their parents can’t afford to pay for them but you can discriminate against children who aren’t entitled to free school meals even though their parents can’t afford to pay for them. I would be obliged if you could explain this in a way that my children will understand because they are the ones who are coming home complaining that it isn’t fair.
If you want to put your two penneth worth in, their email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.