Hungry children – England, not Africa

When one hears of hungry children, one immediately thinks of Africa, places like Somalia and Ethiopia, or the Sudan. But one never equates the phrase ‘hungry children’ with England.

The problem of hungry children

Teachers are trained to deal with various special needs, but the fundamental issue of hunger in UK classrooms is rarely discussed
• Call for teachers to complete a Guardian survey to probe into whether austerity is having a direct impact on pupil hunger

All teachers have seen the effects of not having breakfast on their pupils. How much of a problem is pupil hunger on a long term basis in your classroom? Photograph: Sean Smith for the Guardian

As teachers we have probably all had hungry children in our class. There wasn’t time for breakfast, they overslept, their sister/brother/dog/hamster had eaten all the Coco-Pops. You have heard the excuses and know the knock-on effects.

Few can say they witnessed a child actually foraging for pencil sharpenings to eat because they were so hungry. But I did.

Callum had come in early that cold winter morning and was helping his teacher with a few jobs before class – one of which was sharpening the pencils. I’d popped up from my year four classroom to borrow something or other and walked in to see him guiltily shoving a handful of wooden pencil shavings into his mouth.

Source: The Guardian Read more

Opinion:

When a kid has to eat pencil sharpenings to keep hunger at bey there is something seriously wrong with the system.

The politicians have just got the plot so totally wrong.

Austerity, while it looks good on paper, it doesn’t put food on the table.

I am not talking about government handouts, that’s just as evil. I’m talking about people having jobs, people having dignity, people having the ability to feed their kids.

But the politicians are too busy worrying about their own necks, too busy worrying about the banks, too busy worrying about the rich getting richer. They have ignored the plight of the people who have been robbed by the institutions so that they can be rich.

The plot needs to be rewritten. Priorities need to be changed.

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