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Timeline :: Provision of School Meals Act

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The Provision of School Meals Act of 1906 allowed local authorities to provide free school meals for poor children, allowing local authorities to raise a local tax to pay for this. The Act was introduced following a survey in 1904 (the Interdepartmental Committee on Physical Deterioration) in which it was found that many working-class families were malnourished; the committee advised better nutrition for families. Although a new Liberal Government had come to power in 1906, this was not intorduced as part of Liberal policy - it was a Labour backbencher, William Wilson, put forward the idea of free school meals as a Private Member’s Bill, inspired by the work and writing of the educationalist Margaret McMillan.