Breakfast does more than fill kids' stomachs

(Jan Willem Geertsma)

A healthy breakfast in the morning has the potential to dramatically impact the long-term academic, health and economic development of children, according to a new study.

The Ending Childhood Hunger study was developed by US charity Share Our Strength in collaboration with Deloitte and looked at the effect of school breakfast programmes on participating students across the US.

It found that breakfast had more than a nutritional benefit for the children.

On average, students who eat breakfast were found to achieve 17.5% higher scores on standardised math tests and attend 1.5 more days of school.

There was also a correlation between missing classes and future prospects. Kids who attend class more regularly were 20% more likely to graduate from high school. High school graduates were found to earn $10,090 a year more than those who didn't make the grade, and enjoyed a 4% higher employment rate.

"This report demonstrates that investing in our children and economic prosperity go hand-in-hand," says Billy Shore, founder and chief of Share Our Strength.

"The seemingly simple act of ensuring that children get school breakfast offers the potential for students to experience greater academic achievement, increased job readiness and ultimately more economic prosperity."

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