Maclean High School teachers Steve Woods and Sharon Tarrant help serve some students at the school’s breakfast club.
Maclean High School teachers Steve Woods and Sharon Tarrant help serve some students at the school’s breakfast club.

Breakfast Program food for thought

HUNGRY kids can’t learn.

Brought to light in the 1950s by psychologist Abraham Maslow, the correlation between food and focus is an issue that staff at Maclean High School has sought to tackle with the introduction this term of the Breakfast Program.

At the end of term one, a survey of 265 students at Maclean High revealed that 41% missed breakfast three to five days per week and 28% didn’t take any lunch to school three to five days per week.

“Before the breakfast program some students would spend most of their recess and lunchtime seeking out staff they saw as safe to appeal to for food and money,” learning support teacher and program co-ordinator Robyn Ravenna said.

Now, from Monday to Thursday students can grab a bowl of cereal, some fruit, Milo and toast to kick start their day, if rushing out the door has stopped them from eating before they leave home.

The program also provides a variety of foodstuffs so that kids can make themselves some lunch.

“In the four weeks we’ve been operating, 471 students have used the breakfast program,” Ms Ravenna said.

For one year 11 student, getting up at 6am each day means that breakfast takes the back seat in the morning regimen.

“Most of the time I miss out on breakfast in order to make it to school on time, making it harder to concentrate,” the student said.

“I would strongly like to see the breakfast program continue.”



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