The Better Lunchtimes Mark

Our Hugely successful programme

At School Health UK we believe every child deserves to have the best lunchtime experience, as it is a fundamental part of the whole school day. Our Better Lunchtimes Mark programme achieves this by optimising all aspects of lunchtime, enabling children and staff to be their calmest, happiest and most proactive selves during healthy and efficient lunchtimes. 

Every lunchtime and every school are unique, but there are common areas of lunchtimes that are often overlooked, and by addressing these areas we can directly achieve significant improvements to children’s experiences and positively influence healthy habits and social skills.

The recent changes to our lives have added significant pressure on the whole of the school day - however, with our Safer Lunchtimes Mark principles, we’ve supported schools to implement a Better Lunchtime implementing the components of a Safer Lunchtime, considering social distancing & pupil bubbles & making the guidance work for you and not against you! 

School Kids

The Components of a Better Lunchtime:


A calm, smoother running lunch service 

Pupils & Staff enjoy lunchtime

Organised, active & well zoned playgrounds

Confident, happier, trained & motivated staff

Healthier, more nutritious lunch boxes

Increased take up of healthy school meals

Calm & happy pupils

A whole school approach to health

Pupil bubbles well implemented

Image by Element5 Digital

The Better Lunchtimes Mark 

Using the Principles of a Safer Lunchtime we offer two options for schools. A Silver & Gold Option.

Both options chosen will include our esteemed Safer Lunchtimes Kitemark (so you can demonstrate to your school's community that you have done your utmost to implement a Safer Lunchtime), whilst you also have the option to include our MDS training to fully include the lunch team as part of your progress. 

See below for a breakdown of the options available to you 




One School Visit

If you opt for our Bronze Better Lunchtimes Mark programme, a member of the SHUK team will visit your school to conduct our comprehensive consultation audit exploring all aspects of lunchtimes, including (but not limited to): the whole experience, healthy eating and catering, the dining space, and the outdoor space.

We’ll speak to pupils and staff to investigate concerns and any anxieties, observe the confidence and understanding of undertaking key lunchtime roles, and ensure the outdoor provision is organised in the most efficient and enjoyable way possible.

Upon completing our lunchtime audit, we will have a debrief with you – providing verbal feedback and discussing key actions that can be implemented at your school based on the observations made.

All of this will be collated into your Better Lunchtimes Mark Report, which will be provided alongside resources, action plans, mapping of the playground and dining space, and a checklist to enable you and your team to independently implement changes and make the most of your lunchtimes.

Whilst Social distancing and pupil bubbles are still present, we'll ensure to plan your lunchtime based on the current restrictions and with a 'view to the future'. 

Once you've completed the check list you'll be sent a 'Safer Lunchtimes and A Better Lunchtimes' Kitemark.



Two School Visits

Our Silver programme builds upon the bronze option, offering you support in implementing the actions provided on your report.

The second visit to your school enables us to work closely with the lunch team, supporting and leading them on embedding the changes.

We will ensure to discuss with you how the implemented changes have been since the first visit, prior to taking a hands-on approach to implementing any aspects of the plan that haven't yet been embedded. 

This proactive approach to implementing lunchtime changes will ensure any questions or barriers are resolved during this visit - leaving staff more confident and clear in their roles – empowering them to establish a better lunchtime experience for your school.

Of course, if you decide you would like additional support following this visit we can book extra dates into the diary to further assist your lunchtime team. We can also train the staff team at the end of this session using the principles outlined in our MDS training, to really leave no stone unturned to get every single aspect of the lunchtime addressed.

Once a Better Lunchtime is successfully embedded at your school, we'll award you with our Safer & Better Lunchtimes Kite Mark. 

'We bring together decades of experience to ensure that your school has everything you need for a Better & a Safer Lunchtime'


What to expect from the Better Lunchtimes Mark programme:

We'll Listen to your concerns 

First, we listen to your concerns & focus on the key areas you have highlighted.

Observing your lunchtime

We'll then evaluate each and every component of lunchtime, ensuring we have absorbed the whole experience.

The Debrief & Report

We'll then debrief you with our findings prior to collating a comprehensive report with action plans and resources, prior to supporting you with developments.

Supporting the change

Once you've received our comprehensive report, with tried and tested actions and resources, we'll return to your school to support your team hands-on in embedding the change. We're experts at what we do, and there are rarely issues we haven't resolved with our decades of experience!

Training your team

We believe that your lunch team should feel empowered to 'take control' of lunchtime and our MDS training ensures that everyone is on the same page. Using our principles of a Better Lunchtime, we'll sit with your team to discuss with them at a personal level, how their roles can be optimised going forward - ensuring they take a hands-on and practical approach to developing the lunchtime going forward, so the changes are permanent. 


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What others have said! 


"Our Lunchtimes are so much better now. Children are enjoying sitting in a calm lunch hall and the playgrounds are organised!"

Oaklands Primary

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“The biggest change we have seen at lunchtimes is through the feedback from pupils and parents. They tell us that they now love lunchtimes, the opportunity to have responsibility through being a Lunchtime Monitor and the family dining experience in the hall. Parents tell us that their children talk enthusiastically about lunchtimes and some children who had never tried the school lunch option before are now regularly eating school dinners. It has involved a lot of work but the whole experience has been a huge success.”

Freegrounds Infant School


“Brilliant use of money which has transformed how we work in a very tangible way and all our children have benefited and the staff are so proud of what they have achieved together. I love showing people what we’ve done!”

Hanley St lukes