The impact of the midday meal scheme on nutrition and learning

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Food insecurity and poor nutrition remain a problem in many developing countries and can have profound effects on children’s health and their development. The Midday Meal Scheme in India is a programme covering primary school children to improve nutrition as well as increase educational enrolment, retention and attendance. This policy brief examines the effect of the scheme on nutrition (through testing height and weight) and on children’s learning (through testing vocabulary). The policy brief finds significant evidence of positive, protective effects, particularly for children growing up in communities affected by drought, suggesting there are substantial benefits of school feeding schemes for children’s learning and development.

Those interested in this document may wish to read the Helpdesk Report on School Feeding available here

 

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