Breakfast clubs benefit working parents

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More than one in four parents would be forced to quit their job if they were unable to send their child to a school breakfast club,a new poll finds.

kelloggs-club

The breakfast club at St George's C of E Primary School in Manchester is supported by Kellogg's

Of the 2,000 working parents with children aged four to 16 who were surveyed by Kellogg’s,  nearly a quarter said being able to send their primary school child to a breakfast club means they can get to work on time.

According to Kellogg’s, parents who use breakfast clubs are able to work an additional 93.6 hours a year. The figure is based on the average hours saved a week through the use of clubs  - 2.4 - by the number of school weeks in a year - 39.

More than ten per cent of parents also reported being able to attend college or university because of the provision of school breakfast clubs.

Without access to a club, one in ten parents said they wouldn’t be able to feed their children before they left for work, while one in four ‘lower earning’ families said they would have to leave their children unsupervised for part of the morning.

In areas of the country with little or no school breakfast clubs, one in ten parents said they had been forced to negotiate flexible working hours, one in six had to take a pay cut and one in three had to put their career on hold.

Paul Wheeler, a director of Kellogg’s, said, ‘For millions of parents in Britain, having access to a breakfast club helps them keep down a job. But, with school budgets squeezed, it’s more important than ever that breakfast clubs stay open.’

Jill Rutter, head of policy and research at Family and Childcare Trust, said, ‘Breakfast clubs are a lifeline, particularly for those parents on lower incomes that simply wouldn’t be able to afford to pay out for additional childcare costs on top of their already squeezed household budgets.

‘Not all working families can rely on shift parenting or informal childcare from grandparents and friends so for some, these clubs are literally the difference between working or not. ‘

Schools in deprived areas of the country are invited to apply for a grant from Kellogg’s to help them set up or run an existing breakfast club. The company is awarding grants to 1,000 schools as part of its pledge to donate 15 million portions of cereal and snacks to families in food poverty by the end of 2016. The deadline for applications is 28 March.