Teachers were appalled when a mother sent her child to school with a sandwich filled with just Smarties.
The chocolate-filled butty has prompted calls for an overhaul in pupils’ diets at the Lincolnshire school – including a trial of free school meals.
Health workers at NHS Lincolnshire went in to assess what pupils were bringing in for lunch – and found a wealth of youngsters were gorging on crisps, sweets and chocolate.
Lincolnshire already has one of the highest rates of childhood obesity in the country, with one in three children categorised as obese.
But not only have the free school meals seen children eating more healthy lunchtime options such as pasta, baked potatoes and lean meat, it is also said to have improved behaviour.
Lynne McNiven, assistant director of public health, told the Sunday Express ‘When we heard about the Smarties sandwich, it was horrifying.
‘We went into the schools to have a look and found the children eating what I would class as picnics, the sort of lunch you might have once in a while as a treat, not everyday.
‘Switching to a proper dining experience worried some of the schools, but they have found it is a good experience showing the pupils how to eat properly.’
Last week it was revealed that some schools are being urged to compete with local takeaways by offering special meal deals in a separate bid to get children eating healthy lunches.
With statistics suggesting as many as 25 per cent of boys and 33 per cent of girls aged between two and 19 years are overweight or obese, ministers announced that in future, schools will be able to offer price promotions on school dinners.
Under the current system, schools in England have to charge the same price for the same item for every pupil.
Free school meals are only provided to children whose family meet certain financial criteria.
A parent can apply for free meals for their child if they receive benefits such as income support or job seeker’s allowance.