The Chief Minister’s Free Breakfast Scheme, which benefited 1.7 million pupils, was expanded by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin to include all government elementary schools. The program offers children a free, wholesome meal in an effort to decrease malnutrition and boost attendance. The state has a history of enacting social assistance programs, such as the 1922 introduction of the noon meal program. The latest extension costs INR 404 crore ($54 million) and covers 31,000 public schools.
The Chief Minister’s Breakfast Scheme, which would benefit 1.7 million pupils. It was expanded to all government elementary schools in Tamil Nadu on Friday. The extension was started by Chief Minister M K. Stalin by giving free breakfast to pupils at the Panchayat Union Middle School in Tirukkuvalai, the late M Karunanidhi’s hometown. He joined the kids at the table for breakfast.
“The Chief Minister’s Breakfast Scheme is a pioneer scheme in India and a model for others to emulate,” Stalin declared. Although the new National Education Policy unveiled by the Union administration recommended that free breakfast be given to school pupils along with midday meals, they have made no attempt to put the proposal into practice, he said.
What is the Free Breakfast Scheme in Tamil Nadu?
About 3,000 government schools were included in the program when it was introduced in September of last year. Now that 404 crore has been allotted, 31,000 government schools would profit from it throughout the state. The pilot program was initially designed to offer a healthy breakfast to 100,000 pupils. In classes 1 through 5 throughout 1,545 government schools, 33.56 crores were allotted.
In order to avoid malnutrition, attain an average height in children, prevent underweight in teenagers, prevent anemia, and prevent vitamin B12 deficiency, the free breakfast program was implemented. It also helps enhance school attendance and retention. In addition to this, the government stated that the main goal is to lighten the workload of the six working moms.
Such social welfare programs were first implemented in Tamil Nadu, and the free breakfast program for students is another step in that direction. The noon meal program was first started by the Justice Party in 1922 and extended in 1925. It was stated in April 1947 that the noon meal program would be discontinued owing to a lack of funding. The program was restarted in 1957 by K Kamaraj, the then-Congress chief minister, and 10 lahks were awarded.
The Nutritious Meal Programme fed all school kids year-round. It was started in July 1982 by M G Ramachandran, the founder of ADMK (later AIADMK). He declared that a healthy lunch would be served to children between the ages of 2 and 5 who attend preschool and those between the ages of 5 and 9 who attend primary school.
Karunanidhi stated that one egg would be given to children every two weeks along with a nutritious meal. In 1998, one egg was given once per week. From July 2006, two eggs were given to children each week. In September 2007, three eggs were given to children each week. In 2008, bananas were given to children who did not eat eggs. As of 2010, five eggs have been given to children each week.