Fury as school in Oxfordshire bans packed lunches

Executive headteacher Hannah Wilson said: 'Food education closes the poverty gap and delicious, nutritious should be a universal entitlement'

Executive headteacher Hannah Wilson said: 'Food education closes the poverty gap and delicious, nutritious should be a universal entitlement'

A school has been branded 'draconian' after it banned all packed lunches and only water, Halal meat, gluten-free food and salads.

Aureus School, in Didcot, Oxfordshire, has come under fire from parents for its strict stance on its food policy.

Packed lunches are banned and pupils and staff sit down to eat in the canteen together with an emphasis on eating healthily and socially.

Students and staff get to choose from eating a hot Halal meat meal, hot gluten-free vegetarian meal, a jacket potato, a salad, a pasta pot or a baguette.

The school insists that only water may be drunk on site because 'hydrated brains learn better' and that Halal meat 'celebrates the diversity of our country's culture'.

But some parents hit out at the food policy and said the rules were 'draconian'.

A father, who wished to remain anonymous, said: 'We are thinking of taking her out of the school - it's getting silly and more like a dictatorship. Their views are quite extreme.

'It's about choice. It's supposed to be an inclusive school but they are only catering for one particular religion.'

He said the school's insinuation that pupils would not otherwise get a sit-down meal at home, or would only eat unhealthy food, was 'absolutely insulting'.

The father added that he had tried to get the policies changed since September but had been unsuccessful. 

Executive headteacher Hannah Wilson said: 'Food education closes the poverty gap

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