All five-to-seven year-old pupils in state schools in England will receive free school meals from September next year, Nick Clegg will announce today.
The £600m plan is designed to boost the health and educational attainment of children, and will save families an average of £437 per child per year at a time when many are struggling with the cost of living. It will be unveiled in Mr Clegg's speech to the Liberal Democrats' conference in Glasgow.
Mark Littlewood, director general at the Institute of Economic Affairs, said: "This is an enormously bad use of public money. Not unreasonably, the Government already ensures that those in need have access to free school meals, so it beggars belief that we are now going to see a policy instated which will subsidise the children of affluent families."
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