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Last Updated: Sunday, 3 September 2006, 06:37 GMT 07:37 UK
Schools to offer cooking lessons
Children cooking
School children will be taught how to cook spaghetti bolognese
Schoolchildren in England are to be offered cooking lessons - from baking cakes to making spaghetti bolognese.

It forms part of a government scheme to get children to improve both their diet and culinary skills, and will be formally launched on Monday.

Under the plan there will be 24 one- hour classes for 11 to 16-year-olds and once completed children will receive a "licence to cook" certificate.

The courses will not be compulsory, but from 2008 all schools must offer them.

A spokesman for the Department for Education and Skills said: "We want to see a resurgence in the art of cookery.

"All kids will now get the chance to learn hands-on cookery."

Currently students may be taught some food skills during their Design and Technology (D&T) lessons, but they are usually theoretical and normally focus on health and safety.

The spokesman said: "Schools could have it as part of their D&T over the course of an academic year, or it could be done as an after-school club.

"But what they will really have is life skills that will stand them in good stead for the future."

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