Fife councillors will eat school dinners as part of efforts to improve the standard of meals served to pupils.
In May, Lochgelly High School pupil Bailey-Lee Robb, who is a local member of the Scottish Youth Parliament, told Cowdenbeath area councillors pupils across Fife had described some of the food offered up as “disgusting”.
When the issue was discussed by the committee subsequently, council officials were criticised for failing to consult school pupils on menu choices.
Tariq Ditta, senior manager for facilities management services, conceded not all menu choices were “great” and said councillors would be asked to try the meals themselves.
He said: “I’m sorry to say this but we’re going to be approaching members and asking officers to go out to schools and test some of the food.”
The results of a pupil questionnaire will be brought back to the next Cowdenbeath area meeting in January, some eight months after concerns were initially raised.
Labour councillor Linda Erskine, the committee’s convener, said she was disappointed that by the end of October no consultation had taken place with school pupils.
In May, the committee had agreed Mr Robb’s motion to investigate the issue as “a matter of importance” and to “include young people from the outset”.
Ms Erskine said: “When this was first raised at area committee, it had a huge amount of coverage, not just in the press but the kids all got involved on Facebook and Twitter.
“I thought that when the motion was put forward at area committee that the education service would take it seriously.
“I know there are other issues in education but the food and nutrition that goes into kids’ mouths is very important to us.
“I just want to record my disappointment that the motion that was put forward has not been complied with.”
Concerns have also been raised that pupils are going hungry because the allowance under the free school meals scheme was not sufficient to purchase a snack at break time, in addition to a main meal and drink at lunchtime.
Councillors heard various offers had been introduced to combat hunger among pupils including free soup refills.
School meals were also discussed by the assets and corporate services committee last week, when Labour councillor Garry Haldane said he would be keen to sample the menu.
He said: “I’m an ex-chef so I would be interested in finding out.”
Conservative councillor Kathleen Leslie added: “When we tested them with a group of staff from the council the feedback was generally good in terms of quality but clearly there is something missing because pupils are telling us otherwise.”