Healthy Eating Policy

“Mol an Óige agus tiocfaidh sí”

“Recognising and embracing the diversity within the community, we are committed to developing the individual pupil in a secure and challenging learning environment”


Whole School Plan


Healthy Eating Policy


Food Guide Pyramid Becomes a Plate

Holy Rosary Healthy Eating Policy

Introductory Statement

This policy was formulated by the staff of Holy Rosary Primary School in conjunction with parents, children and school management.

Good nutrition is essential for school children. Physical activity is integral to any healthy eating programme and hence should also be promoted and encouraged.

In consultation with the Principal and Staff, a sub-committee of the Parents’ Association reviewed and updated the school’s healthy eating policy. The involvement of teachers, parents and older children (each important role models) in drawing up the policy ensures that children receive consistent messages both at home and at school.


  • Healthy eating is an essential component of the overall health of children and as such is part of the holistic education that Holy Rosary advocates in its education philosophy and mission statement. The adoption of a whole school approach ensures that healthy eating messages are part of every aspect of school life. 
  • Healthy eating, food and nutrition is part of the SPHE (Social, Personal & Health Education)  curriculum programme for each primary school class. Research suggests that the provision of nutritious school food enhances not only the child’s health but also allows the child to take full advantage of the education provided by improving attention levels and concentration spans. 
  • Key healthy eating messages that are consistent and fact based assist children in decision-making and forming of attitudes and beliefs around healthy eating. 


  • To assist all involved in our school community; children, parents and staff; to develop positive and responsible attitudes to eating and to appreciate the value that good foods are to health.
  • To improve the opportunities for our children to grow into healthy adults and to heighten and awareness of the importance of a balanced diet.
  • To raise levels of concentration within class due to consumption of healthy food.
  • To encourage children to be aware, alert and responsive to litter problems caused by junk food, pre-prepared food, juice cartons etc. and linking this with the school’s Green School Policy.
  • To broaden attitudes towards healthy food by encouraging children to bring in food varieties such as pasta, salads, egg salads, tuna, fish etc.


 Healthy Snacks and Healthy Lunches

  • Healthy lunchboxes may include food items such as fruit, chopped raw vegetables, sandwiches, filled bread rolls and wraps, pasta pots, cheese, yoghurts.
  • Our school takes part in the Hot Lunch Programme. Children in all classes are provided with hot, healthy, nutritionally balanced lunches for Big Break. The lunches are supplied by Glanmore Foods and are heated on the school premises. Menus are provided at the start of the school year and parents get individual login details so that lunch options can be changed throughout the year. Parents have the choice of opting out of the Hot Meal Programme and providing their own lunch for their child.
  • Drinks may include water, milk and fruit juices. No fizzy drinks are permitted. Each classroom has been fitted with a filtered water tap so that water bottles can be refilled throughout the day if necessary. Our school is part of the School Milk Scheme so cartons of milk are available daily.
  • The following foods are not allowed at any time; crisps, popcorn, chewing gum, fizzy or energy drinks, chocolate spread, bars/cereal bars, cakes/buns/doughnuts, chocolate, sweets.
  • Each year parents should inform the school if a child is on a special diet or has an allergy or food phobia.  Once teachers are aware of a child’s special needs they can advise against swapping and sharing food.  In circumstances where a pupil has been diagnosed with a potentially serious health threatening allergy (e.g. nut allergy) children will not be allowed to bring this food in to school.  A letter to this effect will be sent to parents and children will be made aware of the possible consequences. 

Healthy School Environment

  • Through the Parents’ Committee every effort will be made to communicate with and encourage parents to support the healthy eating policy
  • The sub-committee will source and use a variety of strategies to promote this policy by accessing information and sourcing experts to talk to parent/pupil/staff as appropriate.
  • National campaigns will be used as opportunities to focus on healthy eating messages. A healthy eating week will be organised periodically to highlight policy and promote good eating habits.
  • Children eat their lunch while supervised in classrooms and sufficient time will be allocated to allow this to happen.
  • Children are encouraged to drink fluids (water-for tooth health) at all times during the school day.
  • Although a birthday is a special occasion, treats/a cake are not allowed to be sent in. However, the school will have discretion to allow treats on occasions eg Treat Friday (see below) and this will be applied consistently throughout the school. 
  • Please do not send in treats for the whole class. While it is a very kind gesture, the teacher is not permitted to distribute food items sent in from home due to food allergies or ingredients that may not be permitted in certain households.
  • Treat Friday: On the last Friday of every month children are allowed to bring in a mini treat such as a mini bar, a fun sized bag of sweets, a biscuit/ bun or slice of cake. This was a Student Council initiative.
  • Children involved in after-school activities will be encouraged to bring extra nutritious food to school which should be consumed before/during activities. 

Success Criteria

We will know that the policy will be effective if the awareness of the school community is heightened and if all children eat healthy lunches to school and develop healthy attitudes towards food.

Roles and Responsibilities

Parents play an essential role in helping shape children’s eating habits and attitudes towards physical activity. Parents are encouraged to send children to school with a healthy lunch.

Teachers will monitor the progress of the policy in their own classroom. The teacher will send home any food not allowed as per guidelines, along with any uneaten food from a child’s lunchbox. Teacher will monitor if children are not eating their hot lunch choice. Parents will be informed and encouraged to change the lunch option. If children are still not eating their hot lunch parents will be encouraged to cancel the hot lunch order and send in a lunch from home.  The teacher as a role model will be an important strategy in implementing this policy.

Policy and Planning

SPHE- lessons on healthy eating

Hot Meals Scheme

Schools Milk Scheme

Green Schools-food waste is composted

Relationships and Partnerships

Parents Association


Student Council

Timeframe for Implementation and Review

This policy has been implemented since 2006 and has been reviewed with the co-operation of parents, pupils and Board of Management in 2008, 2012, 2014, 2016, 2018 and 2022

Responsibility for review

A subcommittee is formed to conduct the review, made up of teachers, the management team and the Principal.

Ratification and Communication

The policy is published on the school website and disseminated among parents through newsletters. The Board of Management have ratified the policy on September     2022.        

Signed: ______________________                                 Signed: ________________________

Principal                                                                                 Chairperson