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Meet Fran – the Deputy Head at Mandeville Primary School, Hackney. The Leap Federation is where Chefs in Schools was born. All of the staff at LEAP are passionate about getting good food to children. Now schools are closed, Fran says that’s not stopping, it just means they’re doing things differently. Very differently!

Fran usually focuses on helping children with Special Educational Needs settle and get on well at school, but the school closures have changed daily life considerably. Fran now spends at least one day a week packing and labelling meals, organising donated produce, sharing it out and setting up collections.

Fran said: “We’ve been doing around 175 boxes each week – it’s enough food to feed a child for a week, they get fresh produce and things like breakfast cereals. We set up a production line for dishing up the meals into containers, for labelling and sharing out the produce. It’s lovely being part of it, there is a lot of energy and enthusiasm, a real sense of community spirit. It’s a team effort, people from the different LEAP schools working together. 

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It’s really important to keep providing that good food to the families who need it.”

“It is very different to what we’re used to, providing food and education remotely is a big change, but if you work with children, you have to be adaptable. Across the Leap Federation we really focus on providing tasty, nutritious food to our pupils. It’s a passion for all of us, even more so now that people are experiencing isolation or struggling to get by. It’s really important to keep providing that good food to the families who need it.”