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Kitchen's Official Opening

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Celebrity chef Raymond Blanc will be helping Karen Collett, Headteacher at Haddenham St Mary's CE School officially open the new school kitchen at 1.30pm on Friday 15th May. The facilities were built in response to the government initiative stipulating the return of free school meals from September.

The majority of schools stripped out their kitchens when they were no longer required to provide on site catering for pupils; the Haddenham St Mary's kitchen now acts as a hub for three other rural schools ensuring that pupils benefit from nutritious lunches.

Karen has been passionate about responding to the School Food Plan initiative since the legislation was imposed. Frustrated at the prospect of airplane style meals being delivered to the school she cooked up her dream kitchen and is looking forward to celebrating its success.

The purpose of reinstating free school meals was to tackle obesity and ensure pupils have a balanced meal that educates them about nutrition. Mass produced foods packaged up in plastic trays would clearly not have been the best way to achieve this objective, nor would it have been the cheapest given that suppliers would want a profit from the £2.30 allocated per child.

Karen hosted a Food Conference at her school in June where a team of experts including; Raymond Blanc, nutritionist Amanda Ursell, Chair of the National Obesity Forum Tam Fry, Juliane Noble from the Jamie Oliver Foundation and Blue Peter gardener Chris Collins, helped other schools find workable solutions. The school looks forward to welcoming the team back to see that the proof really is in the home-cooked-school-pudding.

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