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Cottingham Eat Xavi pilot

Cottingham Focus School – Eat Xavi hot lunch initiative

onemedifund has been working closely with Focus School Cottingham to encourage pupils to eat healthier school lunches. Since the start of September Cottingham has been serving healthier hot lunches Wednesdays and Thursdays to up to 120 pupils and staff.

Driven by a number of national initiatives to support healthy eating in schools, the Cottingham Eat Xavi meals are based around ideas like the Eatwell plate and other national guidelines.

The new menu has been planned for the next 18 weeks of the Autumn/Winter period and works on a 6-week cycle. The challenge of the Cottingham team was to create a healthier menu that was still tasty, with meals that the pupils still wanted to eat. To achieve this they needed to mix it up a bit. One day the main is Bistro salad, tuna and creamed sweetcorn; the next it’s good old Pizza (though still a slightly healthier version). Desserts vary from Mango and pineapple frozen fruit smoothie, to Mini apple pie and custard. And in addition to the meals, Cottingham is also providing fresh fruit at morning breaktimes.


To gauge the success of the lunches pupils have been provided with simple and fun feedback cards and stickers, enabling them to mark each meal as “Really Tasty”, “Quite Nice” or “Not the best”. Early feedback feedback from pupils, teachers and parents has been extremely positive. And a recent inspectors report was also hugely complimentary about the new initiative.

Summary of pupil feedback up to week 6

Side dishes:

  • Really tasty
  • Quite nice
  • Not the best

Main dishes:

  • Really tasty
  • Quite nice
  • Not the best


  • Really tasty
  • Quite nice
  • Not the best

Menu and resources

The menu
Cottingham’s new healthier menu has been developed between the school management and the catering team. And it is assumed that if/when the Eat Xavi initiative is rolled out schools will maintain responsibility for creating and serving their own healthier menu.

In addition to the broader development of the initiative, onemedifund has also contributed to the Cottingham pilot through the design and production of various templates and supporting resources including:

  • Menu design and layout
  • Feedback cards, stickers and POS boards
  • Branded aprons for catering staff
  • Posters to generate awareness
Download the menu and other resources

The next stage

The Cottingham pilot is now going into its second period. Pupils have experienced each of the Autumn/Winter menu meals and their feedback has been extremely encouraging. As you would expect from a pilot, some of the meals have received better feedback than others. The catering team have been quick to take this on board and have revised the  original menu to reflect this. Details of the revised menu and full details of the feedback from the first 6 weeks are available on request.

A report on the overall outcome of the Cottingham pilot, the next stages of the Eat Xavi initiative and how it could be rolled out to other Focus schools will be published in the coming weeks.

If you are interested in finding out more about Eat Xavi Focus School lunches, and would like to read the Cottingham pilot report when available, please complete the “I am interested…” form.

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Please complete your details in the form below and click the “I would like to know more…” button to submit. All fields marked with * are required.

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Are you involved with Cottingham Campus? Tell us what you think

As a pilot initiative we very much welcome and encourage any and all feedback from pupils, parents, teachers, catering staff and anyone else involved with the Cottingham Campus. From the tastiness of the Swedish meatballs to the price of a meal, or if you have any helpful ideas; please let us know what you think about the school lunch initiative by posting your comments on the Talk Xavi forum.

Visit the Talk Xavi forum