Healthy Eating Policy

Columba College is committed to promoting healthy eating and nutrition within the school community. As part of Wellbeing, Home Economics and Science, Columba College offers nutritional education to all their students, ensuring that all students receive the correct information regarding healthy eating. It is essential that the education in which our students receive in the classroom, is also applied throughout the school environment. Furthermore, it is vital that healthy eating is consistent throughout the whole school environment.


Aims of Policy

  • To encourage the nutritional and overall wellbeing of all pupils in the school.
  • To heighten an awareness of the importance of a balanced diet.
  • To encourage pupils to make wise choices about food and nutrition.
  • To recognise the dietary needs of all pupils and aim to ensure that all pupils’ individual and cultural needs are met.
  • To support pupils to develop life-long healthy eating practises and a positive approach towards food.
  • To raise levels of concentration within class due to consumption of healthy food.
  • To monitor and review the schools practice and policy and, if necessary, make amendments.
  • To work in conjunction with the external catering company to ensure healthy, nutritious snack and meals are being provided.


To assist students in making healthy, nutritional food choices Columba College have developed a list of the foods that are recommended in the school and those that are not allowed.

Food and Drinks that are recommended:

  • Water
  • Fruit Juice
  • Smoothies
  • Milk
  • Sandwiches, Rolls, Wraps or Pitta Bread with a variety of healthy fillings
  • Fruit, Vegetable sticks or Dried Fruit.
  • Crackers, Rice Cakes or Scones
  • Popcorn or Snack a Jack

Food and Drinks that are not allowed: (Will Dermot stand over this as a policy?)

  • Energy drinks and soft drinks
  • Crisps
  • Sweets and bars
  • Chewing Gum


Whole School Context

Columba College provides a physical and social environment to encourage healthy eating. In order to implement the healthy eating policy consideration must be given to the following:

Promotion of healthy eating:

  • Opportunities for unhealthy eating have been removed from the school environment. The school canteen only serves foods and drinks that have been identified as allowed within the Healthy Eating Policy.
  • Water is the only drink that is served in the school canteen.
  • Students are surveyed annually to ascertain their preferences regarding food served in the canteen.


Healthy Eating Events:

  • Healthy breakfast morning in conjunction with Active Week.
  • Guest speakers in relation to healthy eating.
  • Healthy lunch competition in Home Economics.
  • GAA future leaders nutrition module
  • Participating school in the Healthy Schools Award (Irish Heart Foundation).


Cross- curricular links:

  • English- Media Studies
  • Civic Social Political Education (CSPE)
  • Art- Slogan Competition
  • Physical Education (PE)


Responsibilities of Students:

  • To adhere to the food and drinks allowed.
  • To take responsibility for preparing his/her own lunch and using a lunchbox.
  • To dispose of any leftovers or waste in the bins provided within the school.


Responsibilities of Staff:

  • To continue to use the curriculum to increase pupil knowledge regarding nutrition and healthy eating benefits.
  • To promote a positive attitude towards healthy eating right across the curriculum and not only in the classes which have a direct input namely Home Economics, Wellbeing and Science.
  • When and where possible to support students in their developing a health enhancing attitude and behaviour.


Responsibilities of Parents:

  • Encourage students to be physically active and participate in Physical Education.
  • Encourage students to adhere fully to the school’s Healthy Eating Policy.
  • Ask students not to waste or abuse food and to dispose appropriately of any waste wrappers /food.


Healthy Eating Policy Enforcement:

  • Specific guidelines are presented to pupils at general assemblies and to parents at the beginning of the school year to encourage a healthy lunch-box/healthy eating.
  • All special dietary requirements will be respected inclusive of dietary needs and cultural dietary habits. These requirements must be communicated to the Principal/Deputy Principal as soon as possible.
  • Canteen personnel will ensure that healthy options are available to students each lunchtime.
  • Canteen personnel will ensure that healthy snacks are available to students each break time and lunchtime.
  • Bottles of water are available to students on the school premises.
  • Staff have the right to confiscate and dispose of soft drinks and high-caffeine drinks or any other foods deemed inappropriate, from students on school grounds.
  • The Principal will regularly inform pupils in school assemblies of the importance of healthy eating and healthy lunches.
  • The initiative will be monitored by the Principal having considered feedback from staff and parents on its continuation and on how the initiative can be further enhanced and improved.


Success Criteria

The success of this initiative will be measured in terms of how the pupils participate and are enthusiastic about the project.

  • That all families are more aware of and improve their food choices.
  • That teachers continue to note the knock-on effects in terms of good learning.
  • That by taking a cross curricular approach to this initiative, there are benefits to promoting healthy food for healthy minds.


Chairperson of the Board: ____________________________________

Date Ratified: ________________________

Date of Review: _______________________