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Medically identified special diets

Message for New Year R Intake (September 2022)


Will your child require a medical special diet to eat lunch when they start school in September?


Medical special diets are prepared by the NHS for children at HC3S schools who have been advised to avoid a certain food by a medical professional. Special diets are managed through our dedicated special diet portal.


If you would like your child to receive a special diet menu when they start school this September, please create an account and upload your medical evidence by 20 June 2022.


Once you have created your account, HC3S will be able to review your medical evidence with their NHS dietician in order to devise an adapted menu for your child's school lunch.


All Year R parents (regardless of whether your child requires a special diet) are invited to join a Facebook Q & A event HC3S are hosting on 16th June from 1.30 - 3.00 pm.  They will be on hand to answer any questions you may have about the tasty nutritious food your child will be eating when starting school for the first time.  They will also explain about the Universal Free School Meals scheme (UIFSM) and Free School Meal scheme (FSM).


Please Tag @hc3seducationcatering for parents to find them!


Another Facebook Q & A will be held in the evening on Wednesday 13 July at 18.30 pm. These events have been popular in the past so don't miss out.


Should you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact the school office or email:




General information

Within HC3S we provide special diets for pupils with allergies who want to have a school meal. Special diets are provided for pupils with a medical problem, not just a dislike of certain food, and medical evidence confirming the child’s allergy is required.


The standard primary school menu is nut free, with all products used being confirmed as having been manufactured in a nut free environment.


To prevent cross contamination, school kitchens are unable to accept any product/s not from our nominated supplier (including any items brought in by parents/carers).


Any child with a nut allergy can therefore eat our standard menu without having to register for a special diet.


What other diets are catered for?

Other diets include:


• Coeliac (Gluten And Wheat free)

• Dairy free

• Egg free

• A combination diet to satisfy multiple allergies may be provided where possible


We work with the dietician to produce these specific diets. The products and areas of production are included in the analysis by the dietician to make sure food is suitable for children with these specific allergies. The products used in these diets are never substituted.


What information is needed to provide a special diet?

It is the responsibility of the parents/carers to inform the school that their child has an allergy and provide medical evidence, for example a letter from their GP or a consultant paediatrician, together with any information received from the state registered dietician.


What happens to this medical evidence?

Once the school is in receipt of the medical evidence, the Medically identified special diets request form

(HC300) should be completed (held on the HC3S website) and the parent must be asked to sign this form.

The HC300 along with the medical evidence should be passed to the Head of kitchen for signature and

forwarding to the Food development team at HC3S Office, 27-29 Market Street, Eastleigh, Hants SO50 5RG.


When can a child receive their special diet?

The Food Development team will then put together a special diet for the child, which will either be a generic menu or named menu. Once the approval to feed menu has been received by the Head of kitchen, the child can receive their special diet.


A copy of the menu is sent to the Head of kitchen and school (if requested)


Are there any special procedures necessary during the lunch service to cater for children with special diets?

Yes. If a child receives the wrong food, it can have serious health implications. HC3S catering staff are provided with full training on how to prepare and cook a special diet menu ensuring strict protocols around cross contamination.


It is also essential that when children queue for their meal during the busy lunch time service that they are able to clearly identified by HC3S catering staff to ensure that they correct meal is handed to the child.


What identification procedure is necessary?

There are three methods of identity that will ensure children are identified when they are queuing for their lunch.


All children requiring a special diet will wear an orange silcone wrist band, this is provided by HC3S. In

addition, the school will select one or both of the following:


1. Children requiring a special diet will be escorted by a school member of staff to the service counter

2. Children requiring a special diet will be served first at the start of each sitting or year group


It is recommended that all three methods of identity are used as best practice.


HC3S Form HC301 – Medically identified special diet identification form (held by HC3S District Manager) will be completed and held on file as a record of special diet identity for every school.