Schools and food charity in England

William Baker*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review


This paper critically examines the development of food charity in schools in England. Growing numbers of schools, often in partnership with charities and businesses, are directly providing food to parents who are struggling to feed their families. This paper analyses how and why this is happening and its broader significance. The growth of food charity in schools is explained through a mixture of a retreating welfare state, an ongoing cost of living crisis, the continued diffusion of charitable food aid as a socially accepted response to poverty and hunger in the United Kingdom, and schools having to adopt increasing responsibility for making sure that children's basic needs are being met. Drawing on semi-structured interview data gathered from school staff, this paper highlights how schools are becoming a new frontier for charitable food aid.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1387-1402
Number of pages16
JournalBritish Educational Research Journal
Issue number6
Early online date28 Nov 2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 28 Nov 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding for this research has been provided by the University of Bristol by a University Research Fellowship.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 The Authors. British Educational Research Journal published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of British Educational Research Association.


  • food insecurity
  • poverty
  • education
  • Cost-of-living


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