Children who rarely eat breakfast on school days are more likely to achieve worse GCSE grades than those who eat breakfast frequently, a study finds.

Researchers have found that secondary school pupils who eat breakfast regularly score nearly two GCSE grades above their peers who often miss the meal. 

The findings, from the University of Leeds, come as heads have warned of a growing number of children arriving at school hungry. 

The academics, who surveyed hundreds of pupils in schools and colleges in Yorkshire, are calling for free school breakfasts to be given out in every state school in England. 

Currently charities Magic Breakfast and Family Action deliver a breakfast programme, funded by the government, for more than 1,800 schools in socio-economically deprived areas.

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