WHILE five-year-old Lewis Heudi gets a hot school meal his older brother Sebastian does not.

Staff at Woodstock Primary School can see the situation is unfair and are trying to do something about it.

But they have missed out on Government funding that would have allowed them to build new kitchen facilities to provide hot lunches for all pupils.

The county council bid to the Department for Education for about £1.1m for six schools following the government’s free school meals scheme for infants aged four to seven.

Under the government scheme, pupils across the country aged four to seven get free school meals but Key Stage Two pupils aged seven to 11 have to pay for hot lunches.

Three schools were awarded grant funding but Woodstock Primary, in Shipton Road, was not one of them.

Lewis said: “The hot meals warm me up in the winter.”

Sebastian added: “I wish I could get a hot meal at lunchtime.”

Woodstock Primary gets hot meals sent over from Edward Feild Primary School in Kidlington but Edward Feild does not have capacity to cater for the older age group at the 275-pupil primary school in Woodstock.

Headteacher Lisa Rowe said 135 pupils at the school were entitled to free school meals, with 115 taking up the offer.

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She added: “The older pupils can’t get hot meals at the moment and they think it’s unfair, particularly if they have a younger brother or sister in the school who does.

“There are sound reasons for pupils having a hot meal in the middle of the day – it’s thought to aid concentration.

“We are very pleased with the standard of meals coming in – there is a roast dinner once a week – but we want to have the capacity to provide hot meals for Key Stage Two pupils as well as the younger ones.”

Woodstock Primary School business manager Darrell Marchand added: “We are obviously very disappointed by this and will talk to the governors and the county council.

“We will keep pursuing the plan to offer all pupils a hot meal.”

The school’s kitchen closed in 2003, and was converted into a computer room in 2004.

Mr Marchand estimated that it could cost up to £100,000 to build a new kitchen.

The council is waiting for confirmation about funding for William Fletcher Primary School in Yarnton, but bids by Clanfield Primary School and Woodstock Primary School in West Oxfordshire were not successful.

It has not yet been revealed exactly how much funding each school will receive.

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