School staff work in close partnership with professionals involved in setting up individualised mealtime programmes which may involve positioning, appropriate food consistency/textures, eating and drinking utensils and feeding techniques for these pupils
Pupils who have difficulties with motor control may struggle to chew and/or swallow safely, placing them at risk of aspiration, chest infections, constipation, malnutrition and other difficulties.
Pupils can have sensory feeding issues if they have had invasive procedures, a history of reflux or motor feeding difficulties. They may dislike the sensation of food/drink in their mouth and therefore avoid eating and drinking. These pupils are sometimes eating a restricted range of tastes or textures.
Some pupils may have allergies or intolerance to certain foods. This requires careful attention to their diet. Finally, pupils with physical disabilities may need additional support to develop their independence in eating and drinking.
Every pupil in school has an ‘Eating and Drinking’ mat which are used as placemats at lunchtime and all staff have access to the eating and drinking mats of all pupils. This ensures all staff follow the advice from professionals about the eating and drinking requirements of all the children.