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18th May 2015

Survey Finds Over Half of Teachers See Children Arrive to School Hungry

A third of Irish parents with young children worry about feeding their family.

Megan Cassidy

In a recent report by Kelloggs regarding food poverty in Ireland, it was found that more than half of teachers surveyed see children arriving hungry to school. 

The report, titled “Is the Food Divide Getting Bigger” found that 22 per cent of Irish adults worry about their food budget – with this figure rising to 33 per cent in adults who have children in primary school.

Boy kid child eating corn flakes breakfast at the table

The report saw 3,011 Irish adults interviewed including 408 teachers.

Of the teachers surveyed, 53 per cent reported that they saw evidence of children arriving to school hungry, while 77 per cent reported noticing an increase in these incidences in the last 12 months.

“More widespread availability of breakfast clubs is needed as they are a proven way to help tackle the issue of food poverty,” said June Tinsley of Barnardos.

“Arriving to school hungry affects children’s behaviour and mood impacting on their ability to learn and enjoy interactions with classmates and teachers.”

child eating carrot salad

The results of the survey suggest that economic recovery has left those on lower and fixed incomes behind.

Report contributor and Economist, Jim Power, said: “The overall trend in expenditure on food has reduced since 2008, from a high of €7.95 billion, reflecting the fact that many people have suffered income losses and quite simply do not have as much money to spend on food or anything else for that matter.”