Pupils aged 11 - 14 will learn to cook
Experts say that an estimated one million children will become obese within the next decade. In a move to help combat the continuing problem, UK ministers have announced that it will be compulsory for children aged 11-14 to learn to cook for an hour a week in cookery lessons.
Though 85% of secondary schools are said to offer some form of cookery schooling, the goal is to bring cookery lessons to all schools and to recruit more food technology teachers.
Speaking on BBC's One Breakfast show, Schools Secretary Ed Balls said:
"I think it is important to act now and maybe we should have acted earlier."
"It's not going to be just the technology of food, it will be how you can use simple ingredients, simple recipes, so that children and young people can be prepared for adult life."
Clarissa Williams of the National Association of Head Teachers has voiced her concerns however, stating that:
"Cookers, microwaves, all of the utensils, all of that costs a lot of money. There's also the expectation that the children will bring the ingredients and for some ... that could be difficult."
Though the obstacles are apparent, £2.5m a year is being promised to schools to help poorer children pay for ingredients.
In my estimation, there are few better methods to tackle obesity than to educate ourselves, and indeed our children, on simple nutritional information. Do you believe ministers are taking the appropriate steps to help combat obesity? Share your thoughts in the HEXUS forums.