The School Food Trust (SFT) has revealed the first in what it hopes will become a national network of training centres tasked with improving the skills of school cooks.
School FEAST (Food Excellence and Skills Training) centres are part of a £2m Government backed initiative to provide training for those involved in school meal provision.
Eleven centres make up the first group and will begin to provide hands-on cooking lessons to NVQ level 2 and beyond qualifications from February 2008.
Judy Hargadon, chief executive of the SFT, said: "This announcement sees the beginning of a training revolution for school cooks and other school staff."
"School food has deserved importance to the health and wellbeing of hundreds and thousands of children and young people. It is only right that we equip school cooks and those involved in school food with the skills and training they require."
The first eleven centres:
Ashburton Cookery School and its partner City College Plymouth
City of Bristol College and its partner Bristol Chefs Forum
Kent Country Council and its partner KEY Training Provider
Oxford and Cherwell Valley College and partners Oxfordshire local authority; Scolarest; St Gregory the Great School; and Cheney School
South East Essex College
Yeovil College and its partner Somerset College
Bournville College and its partner Birmingham City Council
Northamptonshire Country Council and partners Moulton College; Northampton College; Bedford College; and Tresham College
Royal Agricultural College and partners Cirencester College; Gloucestershire College; Stroud College; and Swindon College
St Helens College
By Chris Druce