Education minister promises P.E.I. school food program for fall 2020
PCs delayed plan announced by former Liberal government in June
A universal school-food program will be rolled out in all Island schools next year, according to P.E.I.'s education minister.
In June, the PC government announced it was delaying a food program promised by the previous Liberal government, and was working on a new plan.
Education Minister Brad Trivers blamed the timing of the provincial election for the delay, saying the timeline was too tight to get a program ready for the 2019-2020 academic year.
In question period Thursday, Green MLA Karla Bernard asked for an update on government's new plans — and Trivers said work is underway, and he intends to make an announcement soon.
"It is definitely my goal to have a universal school-food program in every school across Prince Edward Island by September 2020," Trivers said.
Pilot project this year
Bernard said a universal lunch program was identified as a priority by all three parties — and she said access to healthful food affects students' academic performance.
"A school lunch program then is not just a way to address health inequity, it would also ensure that everyone of our kids gets a fair shot at achieving the success they deserve, whatever that looks like to them," Bernard said.
Trivers said he "couldn't agree more" with how important such a program would be.
Trivers said there will be a pilot program in some schools during the current school year, which will help to determine the exact details of an Island-wide program for next fall.