The National Union of Students (NUS) is celebrating a lobbying victory on hearing the news that Nick Clegg, Deputy Prime Minister and Liberal Democrat Leader, has announced that the government will extend free school meals to disadvantaged students in further education and sixth form colleges from September 2014.
Free school meals were previously available only for eligible students at school sixth forms and NUS has campaigned extensively with the Association of Colleges (AoC) and actively backed the “No Free Lunch?” campaign, which called on the government to extend free meals to all 16-18 year olds from a disadvantaged background.
As part of their campaign, NUS worked closely with City College Norwich’s students’ union which encouraged students to lobby their local MPs on the issue.
Joe Vinson, NUS Vice President (Further Education) said:
“This welcome announcement marks the end of the historic bias towards sixth forms which left students in FE colleges unable to receive a free lunch.
“This is a great win not just for NUS and the other supporters of the campaign, but most of all for the students who will benefit from this new policy.
“FE students and their carers are feeling the squeeze more than ever after the scrapping of the Education Maintenance Allowance and soaring living costs, and this new policy will help many students and their families across the country.”
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