Gorleston schools making changes to how school meals are booked

Pupils playing.

Since the start if the first lockdown, parents and carers of pupils at Wroughton Academies have been using technology more. - Credit: Wroughton Academies

Two linked schools in Gorleston have made changes to how school meals can be booked online.

Wroughton Academies is introducing an automated online system at Wroughton Infant Academy and Wroughton Junior Academy where parents and carers can help pupils sign up for their lunchtime meals a week ahead of schedule.

Five meals are available to choose from, with the schools saying parents welcomed the move.

If a meal has not been booked ahead of schedule, the school will make the booking on behalf of parents and carers.

Since the first lockdown, the school has been using online platforms to help pupils and parents and carers carry out certain school-related tasks.

The introduction of the new online school menu system aims to help make paying for and choosing meals more efficient.

Currently, the school uses online platforms for setting and completing homework.

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Online, parents and carers are able to receive school correspondence, book extra-curricular activities, sign up for school trips and purchase school items such as ties and swim hats.

Pupils reading at a school desk.

The new menu system means parents and carers will have to book their child's school meal a week in advance. - Credit: Wroughton Academies

Jo Snelling, principal of both academies, said: "Lockdown was a challenging time for schools, but one positive development that came out of it has been our use of technology, which our parents and carers have embraced.

"They support their children’s learning by completing online homework quizzes every week and have attended online parents evenings.

"We have used ParentPay for families to pay in advance for visits, clubs and lunches successfully for three years. 

"After Easter, we are introducing an additional facility for parents and carers to help their children choose one of five lunch options a day.

"We have had overwhelmingly positive feedback to this latest change, with many families having already made their choices.

"We have offered to meet and support any families who would like our assistance."

The change has received criticism from one parent who said: "As an adult, I would find it tricky to say what I wanted for lunch every day next week.

"This would be even harder for a five or six-year-old who will very often choose what they would like to eat for lunch depending on how hungry they feel that day."