Baroness Boycott Portrait

Baroness Boycott

Crossbench - Life peer

2 APPG memberships (as of 2 Jun 2021)
Environmental, Social, and Governance, PANS and PANDAS
1 Former APPG membership
Agroecology for Sustainable Food and Farming
Baroness Boycott has no previous appointments


Select Committee Meeting
Tuesday 29th June 2021
09:30
Division Votes
Thursday 10th June 2021
Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development etc.) (England) (Amendment) Order 2021
voted Aye
One of 21 Crossbench Aye votes vs 40 Crossbench No votes
Tally: Ayes - 104 Noes - 241
Speeches
Thursday 10th June 2021
Environment Bill: Royal Assent

My Lords, there is quite a degree of concern about the new watchdog, the office for environmental protection, and a …

Written Answers
Thursday 12th November 2020
Climate Change Convention
To ask Her Majesty's Government what the vetting process will be for organisations applying to host COP26 fringe meetings and …
Early Day Motions
None available
Bills
Tuesday 4th February 2020
Period Products (Free Provision) Bill [HL] 2019-21
A bill to provide for the provision of free period products
Tweets
None available
MP Financial Interests
None available

Division Voting information

During the current Parliamentary Session, Baroness Boycott has voted in 102 divisions, and never against the majority of their Party.
View All Baroness Boycott Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

Speeches made during Parliamentary debates are recorded in Hansard. For ease of browsing we have grouped debates into individual, departmental and legislative categories.

Sparring Partners
Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park (Conservative)
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
(20 debate interactions)
Lord Callanan (Conservative)
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
(20 debate interactions)
Baroness Stedman-Scott (Conservative)
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
(12 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
View all Baroness Boycott's debates

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Baroness Boycott, and are more likely to reflect personal policy preferences.

MPs who are act as Ministers or Shadow Ministers are generally restricted from performing Commons initiatives other than Urgent Questions.


Baroness Boycott has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Baroness Boycott has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

1 Bill introduced by Baroness Boycott


A bill to provide for the provision of free period products


Last Event - 1st Reading (Lords)
Tuesday 4th February 2020
(Read Debate)

Baroness Boycott has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


23 Written Questions in the current parliament

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
29th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what the vetting process will be for organisations applying to host COP26 fringe meetings and events; and what plans they have to publish that process.

We are looking to work and partner with organisations committed to taking positive action to tackle climate change. We will be launching a registration process for organisations wanting to be involved in UK Government managed events around COP26 in the new year. The process is currently under development and further detail will be released in due course.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
29th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that sponsors and other organisations involved with COP26 are demonstrably committed to tackling climate change; and what criteria they intend to use to assess that commitment.

The Government has set strict sponsorship criteria for COP26 and will only partner with companies who have committed to or set net-zero commitments by 2050 or earlier, and have a credible and aligned short-term action plan to achieve this. We conduct due diligence on all potential sponsors, and ensure compliance with our standards. The Government is encouraging companies with strong climate credentials to apply for sponsorship through the COP26 website.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
28th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what will be the hospitality arrangements for COP26; and what plans they have to publish the procurement process for those arrangements in full.

Plans for hospitality for the Event are still under consideration and we will be working closely with all venues to deliver the facilities and requirements needed. The plans will be published in line with Public Sector Procurement guidelines

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
28th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what budget has been allocated to public engagement campaigns to change behaviours before COP26; what organisations they will partner with to deliver any such campaigns; and when any such public engagement campaigns will be announced.

Achieving our net zero target must be a shared endeavour between governments, businesses and individuals, and we must continue to engage the public on this challenge. In preparation for COP26, the Cabinet Office set up a dedicated engagement team that will facilitate engagement with businesses, wider civil society and youth, and cities and regions on COP26. This will ensure that the UK brings along all of society in the global transition to a net-zero economy and in the delivery of an ambitious and inclusive COP26 summit. Budget for a public engagement campaign is currently going through the government approval process and is yet to be confirmed. We will continue to engage the public as we develop our plans for reaching net zero emissions by 2050.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
28th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government with how many governments they have started pre-negotiations in advance of COP26.

The UK is committed to agreeing a negotiated outcome at COP26 that accelerates climate action and leaves no issue behind. Our approach is aligned with the UNFCCC process: formal negotiations have been postponed to 2021 but we are engaging broadly and facilitating exchanges of views so that progress can be made.

As part of the UK’s transparent and inclusive approach to the COP26 presidency, Ministers and senior officials across government have directly engaged with over 100 governments; and all countries have been engaged through our FCO network and UN Missions. The Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has been at the heart of that, playing a leading role in a number of multilateral climate change fora and engaging bilaterally with over 40 countries to discuss matters relating to COP26. As an example of the regular engagement with countries, in September, the UK, alongside current Presidency Chile and the Chairs of the UNFCCC Subsidiary Bodies, conducted consultations with all negotiating groups on the way forward to COP26.

We look forward to the UNFCCC Climate Change Dialogues 23 November - 4 December as an opportunity for further exchanges of views and to make progress on key issues ahead of the Ambition Summit that we’re hosting on 12 December and on the pathway to COP26 next year.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
26th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what scrutiny mechanisms they plan to propose to Parliament for the scrutiny of COP26 sponsorship agreements.

Sponsorship is an important part of our funding arrangements for COP26, supporting the successful delivery of an event with the level of ambition required to tackle the urgent challenge of climate change; and enhancing value for money for taxpayers. The names of any confirmed sponsor will be published on the COP26 website. The Government will conduct due diligence on all potential sponsors and ensure compliance with rigorous standards. Environmental transparency and disclosure is vital to track progress towards a net zero economy, and this is one of the criteria that the Government is using to assess potential sponsors. The Government has set strict sponsorship criteria for COP26 and will only partner with companies who have set net-zero commitments by 2050 or earlier, and who have published a credible and aligned short-term action plan to achieve this. The Government is encouraging companies with strong climate credentials to apply for sponsorship through the COP26 website.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
26th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to limit sponsorship for COP26 (1) to companies which have a plan to half their emissions by 2030, and (2) to companies that have disclosed plans that are aligned with the Paris Agreement goal of limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees.

Sponsorship is an important part of our funding arrangements for COP26, supporting the successful delivery of an event with the level of ambition required to tackle the urgent challenge of climate change; and enhancing value for money for taxpayers. The names of any confirmed sponsor will be published on the COP26 website. The Government will conduct due diligence on all potential sponsors and ensure compliance with rigorous standards. Environmental transparency and disclosure is vital to track progress towards a net zero economy, and this is one of the criteria that the Government is using to assess potential sponsors. The Government has set strict sponsorship criteria for COP26 and will only partner with companies who have set net-zero commitments by 2050 or earlier, and who have published a credible and aligned short-term action plan to achieve this. The Government is encouraging companies with strong climate credentials to apply for sponsorship through the COP26 website.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
26th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how much funding they expect to raise from sponsorship for COP26; and whether they will provide a breakdown of that funding.

Sponsorship is an important part of our funding arrangements for COP26, supporting the successful delivery of an event with the level of ambition required to tackle the urgent challenge of climate change; and enhancing value for money for taxpayers. The names of any confirmed sponsor will be published on the COP26 website. The Government will conduct due diligence on all potential sponsors and ensure compliance with rigorous standards. Environmental transparency and disclosure is vital to track progress towards a net zero economy, and this is one of the criteria that the Government is using to assess potential sponsors. The Government has set strict sponsorship criteria for COP26 and will only partner with companies who have set net-zero commitments by 2050 or earlier, and who have published a credible and aligned short-term action plan to achieve this. The Government is encouraging companies with strong climate credentials to apply for sponsorship through the COP26 website.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
26th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have for a public engagement strategy for COP26, following the report by Bright Blue, Going Greener? Public Attitudes to Net Zero, published 12 October, which stated that 58 per cent of people asked did not think that the UK would reach net zero by 2050.

In preparation for COP26, the Cabinet Office has set up a dedicated engagement team that will facilitate engagement with businesses, wider civil society and youth, and cities and regions on COP26. This will ensure that the UK brings along all of society in the global transition to a net-zero economy and in the delivery of an ambitious and inclusive COP26 summit. We will continue to engage the public as we develop our plans for reaching net zero emissions by 2050.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
26th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they plan (1) to publish the historic and current emissions of any COP26 sponsors, or (2) to place a requirement on potential sponsors to publish their historic and current emissions.

Sponsorship is an important part of our funding arrangements for COP26, supporting the successful delivery of an event with the level of ambition required to tackle the urgent challenge of climate change; and enhancing value for money for taxpayers. The names of any confirmed sponsor will be published on the COP26 website. The Government will conduct due diligence on all potential sponsors and ensure compliance with rigorous standards. Environmental transparency and disclosure is vital to track progress towards a net zero economy, and this is one of the criteria that the Government is using to assess potential sponsors. The Government has set strict sponsorship criteria for COP26 and will only partner with companies who have set net-zero commitments by 2050 or earlier, and who have published a credible and aligned short-term action plan to achieve this. The Government is encouraging companies with strong climate credentials to apply for sponsorship through the COP26 website.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
26th Oct 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what budget has been set for the UK to host COP26.

Discussions on costs for COP26 are currently ongoing, and final budgets are yet to be confirmed.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
15th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact on (1) the economy, and (2) carbon emissions, of retrofitting all publicly funded and owned buildings to achieve net zero emissions.

The Government carries out full impact assessments when setting the carbon budgets on a path to reaching our 2050 target.

The Government publishes national emissions statistics annually[1]. In 2018, the latest year for which data is available, the public sector accounted for 2% of total UK emissions.

Decarbonising the public sector will reduce carbon emissions and will contribute to economic growth and the creation of green jobs.

The impacts of unmitigated climate change are estimated at 5-20% of global GDP[2] whilst the costs of action to deliver net zero were estimated by the CCC last year[3] as 1-2% of global GDP in 2050 – and that could be partly or fully offset by benefits. The projected cost of reaching net zero has now reduced dramatically because of advances in clean energy and green technology, which we anticipate will continue to fall.

[1] https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/final-uk-greenhouse-gas-emissions-national-statistics-1990-to-2018

[2] The Economics of Climate Change, The Stern Review, 2014

[3] https://www.theccc.org.uk/publication/net-zero-the-uks-contribution-to-stopping-global-warming/

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
15th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of whether the education system adequately reflects the challenges presented by climate change in terms of (1) the curriculum, (2) teacher training, and (3) the energy efficiency of educational facilities.

It is vital that young people are taught about climate change. For this reason, related topics are included throughout both the science and geography curricula and GCSEs. In primary science and geography, pupils are given a firm foundation for the further study of the environment in secondary school. For example, in primary science pupils are taught about how environments can change as a result of human actions. They will learn about animals’ habitats, including that changes to the environment may pose dangers to living things.

In secondary science, pupils are taught about the production of carbon dioxide by human activity and the effect this has on the climate. This is expanded on in GCSE science where pupils will consider the evidence for additional anthropogenic causes of climate change. As part of GCSE geography pupils will look at the causes, consequences of and responses to extreme weather conditions and natural weather hazards. In 2017, we also introduced a new environmental science A level. This will enable students to study topics that will support their understanding of climate change and how it can be tackled.

School and teachers can go beyond the topics set out in the national curriculum, or do more in-depth teaching of these topic areas, if they so wish.

We are supporting recruitment and retention of teachers in these subjects to ensure that schools have the expertise to teach topics relating to climate change effectively. In science, trainee teachers are offered bursaries of £26,000 and scholarships of £28,000 to attract top science graduates into teaching. New physics and chemistry teachers will soon be offered early-career payments of up to £9,000 during their first four years of teaching. We also fund Subject Knowledge Enhancement (SKE) courses for geography and the sciences. These are courses designed to help applicants gain the depth of subject knowledge needed to train to teach their chosen subject.

The new Initial Teacher Training (ITT) Core Content Framework, published 1 November 2019, sets out a core minimum entitlement for all trainees of what should be covered during their teacher training, irrespective of subject or phase. The government does not prescribe the curriculum of ITT or SKE courses and it remains for individual providers to design curricula appropriate for the subject, phase and age range that the trainees will be teaching. Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) will continue to be awarded at the end of ITT against the Teachers’ Standards, which includes secure knowledge of relevant subjects and curriculum areas.

We also support energy efficiency in educational facilities through our capital funding and programmes, both to reduce the carbon footprint and save schools money on energy. We have allocated almost £9 billion in condition funding since 2015 to maintain and improve school buildings. Condition funding can be invested in projects which improve energy efficiency. In addition, interest free loans for energy efficiency projects have been made available through the government backed Salix finance scheme.

Baroness Berridge
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
15th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the proposals set out in Teach the Future’s Green Recovery for Education initiative; and whether retrofitting educational buildings will be included as a priority in (1) the national infrastructure strategy, and (2) the COVID-19 recovery strategy.

The department supports sustainability through its capital funding programmes, both to reduce carbon and save schools and the wider education estate money on energy.

We have allocated almost £9 billion in condition funding since 2015 to maintain and improve school buildings. In addition, the Priority School Building Programme is rebuilding or refurbishing school buildings in the worst condition across the country, covering over 500 schools.

Condition funding can be invested in projects which improve energy efficiency. In addition, interest free loans for energy efficiency projects are available through the government backed Salix finance scheme.

More broadly, we are working with colleagues across government on carbon reduction and energy efficiency, and we are developing thinking on how future school capital programmes can contribute further.

Like all departments, we are doing a great deal of preparatory work to understand what resources the education sector needs over the coming years, including as part of the wider response to COVID-19.

Baroness Berridge
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
15th Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the potential for all new state-funded educational buildings to be net-zero from 2022 and all existing state-funded educational buildings to be retrofitted to net-zero by 2030.

The department supports sustainability through its capital funding programmes, both to reduce carbon and save schools and the wider education estate money on energy.

We have allocated almost £9 billion in condition funding since 2015 to maintain and improve school buildings. In addition, the Priority School Building Programme is rebuilding or refurbishing school buildings in the worst condition across the country, covering over 500 schools.

Condition funding can be invested in projects which improve energy efficiency. In addition, interest free loans for energy efficiency projects are available through the government backed Salix finance scheme.

More broadly, we are working with colleagues across government on carbon reduction and energy efficiency, and we are developing thinking on how future school capital programmes can contribute further.

Like all departments, we are doing a great deal of preparatory work to understand what resources the education sector needs over the coming years, including as part of the wider response to COVID-19.

Baroness Berridge
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
12th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what estimate they have made of the number of children who are eligible for the national voucher scheme; and what is the current rate of take up in England.

As both my right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have made clear, the government will do whatever it takes to support people affected by COVID-19.

Our latest guidance on for schools is set out below:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-schools-and-other-educational-settings.

During this period, we are asking schools to support children who are eligible for and claiming benefits-related free school meals, by providing meals or food parcels through their existing food providers wherever possible. However, we recognise that providing meals and food parcels is not a practicable option for all schools. That is why on 31 March we launched a national voucher scheme as an alternative option, with costs covered by the Department for Education.

Schools are best placed to make decisions about the most appropriate arrangements for eligible pupils and this can include food parcel arrangements, alternative voucher arrangements or provision through the national voucher scheme.

Edenred has reported that over £101.5 million worth of voucher codes have been redeemed into supermarket eGift cards by schools and families through the scheme as of Friday 22 May. Edenred has also reported that 17,000 schools had placed orders for the scheme as of Tuesday 12 May. We do not collect data on the scheme at pupil level.

The number and proportion of students who qualify for free school meals is published in the ‘Schools, pupils and their characteristics’ publication and its underlying data files. As of the 2019 school census, there are around 1.3 million children eligible for and claiming free school meals. Statistics for the 2020 school census are not yet available. The 2019 publication is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/schools-pupils-and-their-characteristics-january-2019.

These are rapidly developing circumstances; we continue to keep the situation under review and will keep Parliament updated accordingly.

Baroness Berridge
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
12th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the current take up rate of the national voucher scheme; and how many vouchers provided through that scheme have been spent in supermarkets.

As my right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have both made clear, the government will do whatever it takes to support people affected by Covid-19.

Our latest guidance for schools is set out below:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-schools-and-other-educational-settings.

During this period, we are asking schools to support children who are eligible for and claiming benefits-related free school meals by providing meals or food parcels through their existing food providers wherever possible. We know that many schools are successfully delivering food parcels or arranging food collections for eligible children and we encourage this approach where it is possible.

Where this is not possible, we have introduced a national voucher scheme to provide headteachers with additional flexibility to decide what is best for families at their schools. More information about the national voucher scheme is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-free-school-meals-guidance/covid-19-free-school-meals-guidance-for-schools.

As of Friday 22 May, Edenred reported that over £101.5 million has been redeemed into supermarket vouchers by families and schools. As of Tuesday 12 May, Edenred reported that 17,000 schools had placed an order. Schools will continue to receive their core funding allocations as normal.

These are rapidly developing circumstances. We will continue to keep the situation under review and will keep Parliament updated accordingly.

Baroness Berridge
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
12th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how they intend to measure the success of the national voucher scheme; and whether they have access to supermarket data on (1) the amount of vouchers spent, and (2) what foods such vouchers were spent on, in order to assess whether the scheme was successful in supporting healthy eating.

As both my right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have made clear, the government will do whatever it takes to support people affected by COVID 19.

Our latest guidance for schools is set out below:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-schools-and-other-educational-settings.

During this period, we are asking schools to support pupils eligible for benefits-related free school meals by providing meals or food parcels through their existing food providers wherever possible. However, we recognise that providing meals and food parcels is not a practicable option for all schools. That is why on 31 March we launched a national voucher scheme as an alternative option, with costs covered by the Department for Education.

Voucher codes are being processed and many thousands of families are redeeming them. Edenred has reported that over £101.5 million worth of voucher codes have been redeemed into supermarket eGift cards by schools and families through the scheme as of Friday 22 May. Edenred has reported that 17,000 schools had placed orders for the scheme as of Tuesday 12 May.

Families are free to select the most appropriate food and drink for their child. When selecting products, we encourage families to consider health and nutrition. The School Food Standards may act as a useful guide for families and is available at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/standards-for-school-food-in-england.

The vouchers should not be redeemed for any age-restricted items, such as alcohol, cigarettes or lottery tickets.

There are a number of online resources available to support families in preparing healthy and nutritious food, including on the NHS Eat Well website: https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/?tabname=recipes-and-tips.

Provision for free school meals is ordinarily term time only. However, during the Easter holidays the department met the costs of offering free school meals to eligible pupils not attending school during term time weeks. This was in recognition of the unprecedented levels of disruption and uncertainty for schools during this time.

These are rapidly developing circumstances; we continue to keep the situation under review and will keep Parliament updated accordingly.

Baroness Berridge
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
12th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what guidance they have issued to support families to feed children nutritious food that meets school food standards whist schools are closed.

As both my right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have made clear, the government will do whatever it takes to support people affected by COVID 19.

Our latest guidance for schools is set out below:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-schools-and-other-educational-settings.

During this period, we are asking schools to support pupils eligible for benefits-related free school meals by providing meals or food parcels through their existing food providers wherever possible. However, we recognise that providing meals and food parcels is not a practicable option for all schools. That is why on 31 March we launched a national voucher scheme as an alternative option, with costs covered by the Department for Education.

Voucher codes are being processed and many thousands of families are redeeming them. Edenred has reported that over £101.5 million worth of voucher codes have been redeemed into supermarket eGift cards by schools and families through the scheme as of Friday 22 May. Edenred has reported that 17,000 schools had placed orders for the scheme as of Tuesday 12 May.

Families are free to select the most appropriate food and drink for their child. When selecting products, we encourage families to consider health and nutrition. The School Food Standards may act as a useful guide for families and is available at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/standards-for-school-food-in-england.

The vouchers should not be redeemed for any age-restricted items, such as alcohol, cigarettes or lottery tickets.

There are a number of online resources available to support families in preparing healthy and nutritious food, including on the NHS Eat Well website: https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/?tabname=recipes-and-tips.

Provision for free school meals is ordinarily term time only. However, during the Easter holidays the department met the costs of offering free school meals to eligible pupils not attending school during term time weeks. This was in recognition of the unprecedented levels of disruption and uncertainty for schools during this time.

These are rapidly developing circumstances; we continue to keep the situation under review and will keep Parliament updated accordingly.

Baroness Berridge
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
12th May 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to extend the national voucher scheme to cover the half-term holiday in May and the six-week summer holiday.

As both my right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and Chancellor of the Exchequer have made clear, the government will do whatever it takes to support people affected by COVID 19.

Our latest guidance for schools is set out below:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/coronavirus-covid-19-guidance-for-schools-and-other-educational-settings.

During this period, we are asking schools to support pupils eligible for benefits-related free school meals by providing meals or food parcels through their existing food providers wherever possible. However, we recognise that providing meals and food parcels is not a practicable option for all schools. That is why on 31 March we launched a national voucher scheme as an alternative option, with costs covered by the Department for Education.

Voucher codes are being processed and many thousands of families are redeeming them. Edenred has reported that over £101.5 million worth of voucher codes have been redeemed into supermarket eGift cards by schools and families through the scheme as of Friday 22 May. Edenred has reported that 17,000 schools had placed orders for the scheme as of Tuesday 12 May.

Families are free to select the most appropriate food and drink for their child. When selecting products, we encourage families to consider health and nutrition. The School Food Standards may act as a useful guide for families and is available at the following link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/standards-for-school-food-in-england.

The vouchers should not be redeemed for any age-restricted items, such as alcohol, cigarettes or lottery tickets.

There are a number of online resources available to support families in preparing healthy and nutritious food, including on the NHS Eat Well website: https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/?tabname=recipes-and-tips.

Provision for free school meals is ordinarily term time only. However, during the Easter holidays the department met the costs of offering free school meals to eligible pupils not attending school during term time weeks. This was in recognition of the unprecedented levels of disruption and uncertainty for schools during this time.

These are rapidly developing circumstances; we continue to keep the situation under review and will keep Parliament updated accordingly.

Baroness Berridge
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
29th Apr 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many households with children are currently receiving Universal Credit as well as legacy benefits; and what proportion of those cannot fully benefit from the recent £1,000 increase in Universal Credit as that increase pushed them over the limit of the total amount of benefit they are allowed to receive.

The information requested is not readily available and to provide a reply would require us to produce new analysis to link together several complex datasets, including Child Benefit data which is administered by HMRC, to identify if a household would have a benefit income above the cap levels due to increases in their UC award alone (independent of increases to Local Housing Allowance and CPI uprating of working age benefits). We would also need to identify if the household would otherwise be exempt from the benefit cap. This includes assessing whether or not a household has earnings over the earnings threshold, currently £604 per assessment period, is in receipt of an exempting benefit e.g. Personal Independence Payments, Carer’s Allowance etc. or is eligible for a grace period due to previous earnings. It is estimated that the time this would take to produce and quality assure the results would be in excess of 4 working days and therefore would incur disproportionate costs.

Baroness Stedman-Scott
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)