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Member Comments for the Article:

The School Lunch Dilemma

To Buy or To Pack?

63 Comments




 
8/20/2012 11:35:37 AM

UWISHTOO's SparkPage
But didn't Mrs Obama start banning certain foods? Hmm. I do agree that what the children learn in their early years will carry over into adulthood. It did for me for sure since my mother was basically a single mom during the week due to my dad being on the road for work all week. Her idea of a homecooked meal was plopping me in front of the TV with frozen pizzas, sandwiches, chips, ice cream etc.
8/20/2012 10:56:27 AM

MAGISTRANANCY's SparkPage
I have a friend who is has a large, organic farm. She is supplying more and more of the local school districts with fresh, local and organic fruits and vegetables. It's very encouraging, but there is still a long way to go.
8/20/2012 10:38:13 AM

VJH-W65's SparkPage
School lunches are great the fact that it was my ONLY MEAL factors in
this answer, in the 1950-1960-1970-1980s
they were high starch/simple carbs. but they were FOOD.
Doc said, "School lunch is not supposed to be the daily balance meal.
Just 1/3 of the daily total."
Everything i have read the summary is that
loading ocomponents of a days intake does not work
All protein, all starch, all veggie, all fruit, all dairy not a good plan.
Here the lunch program is built around
the government subsidies,




LOVESLIFE48
8/20/2012 9:42:38 AM

I'm sick of people complaining about school lunches, Thanks a lot Michelle!!!!!
8/20/2012 9:19:54 AM

MEADSBAY's SparkPage
"On the way to the lunchroom, the hallways are lined with vending machines selling soda, chips and candy. The kids in the lunchroom flock toward the a lá carte counter, where they can buy French fries, hot dogs, and sugary drinks."

NOT anything like any cafeteria in any RI public school I ever worked in in my 30 yrs of teaching.
What a nightmare!
ELMOSTEMPTYNEST
8/20/2012 8:29:29 AM

It may start with the parents but for all you parents of preteen kids, listen up. The advertising and the fast food restaurants are calling to our kids constantly. I always had home cooked meals (I was a stay at home mom) and modeled healthy eating with the occasional treat (desserts only on weekends). Once your child is a teen and out and about they are making their own choices and the choices mostly depend on their friends and what is going on in the moment. Then they start driving themselves and popping through the drive thru. A parent can do so much - but at the end of the day - when you no longer have control, don't be surprised at what your kid may choose...so don't be so hard on other parents.
8/20/2012 2:27:04 AM

BBSPIKE's SparkPage
We don't have cafeterias in our school. Neither do we have vending or soft drink machines.
NO junk food is permitted in the home packed lunch boxes or in the "Tuck Shop". The tuck shop is strictly monitored and sells only nutritious food to children who haven't brought lunch from home. This includes fresh fruit & veges daily, juice and wholesome sandwhiches. Also hot food.The Australian Government has also established a free breakfast program State wide whereby any child who comes to school without breakfast can get it for free at school. This includes cereal, fresh milk, fresh juice, toast,eggs. Good nutrition and healthy eating habits is taught right from preschool to high school.
3/29/2012 10:39:33 AM

TBOURLON's SparkPage
There was a time when my daughter was in middle school that the cafeteria food became so bad, she started brownbagging. I always thought a hot meal and fresh milk were better options than a sandwich, chips and canned soda (or water), but the poor quality made me change my mind. Now she's in a high school with a fast-food franchise right there in the cafeteria - and guess where people eat! She also complains that the school lunches are too small, so I give her $3 a day (the school lunch is $2.20) to get extra food with. I know she hits the vending machines, but not every day - she doesn't have enough money for that. One good thing is, she's totally burned out on pizza and thinks it's too greasy. And lately she's been eating oatmeal for breakfast - say Halelujah!!!
MADDY93
1/16/2012 8:52:29 AM

Unfortunately, I see absolutely no healthy options at my high school. The food is greasy and disgusting. We don't even have fruit, and when we do, it's soft or rotten.
4/11/2011 3:49:51 PM

BZEMOM1's SparkPage
I have packed my kids lunches most of their elementary lives for several reasons. In the state I live in, nutritional allowances are calculated weekly and not daily. Secondly, tatertots can be counted as a vegetable and thirdly, my kids have high metabolisms and are active they were consistently hungry. Lastly, when their "hot breakfast" consisted of a flour tortilla smeared with peanut butter and jelly with rice cereal sprinkled in the middle and rolled up, I had enough. My kids received a fruit a vegetable a protein and drink (usually juice--100% juice) and a dessert. If they didn't eat their veggie and fruit, no dessert the rest of the week. Starting them in kindergarten with this mindset has led to my kids making healthier choices, even when they DID eat at school.
Now just this morning, I read where a public school in Chicago is banning kids from bringing lunches from home because school lunches were healthier for them. If I were from that school, I would be questioning their decision and asking for their menu line up and how it's healthier than what my kids are bringing. I understand not every parent will help their kids make those choices, but for those who do...this decision is ridiculous and counter-productive.
4/11/2011 10:54:14 AM

FARMWIFEANDMOM's SparkPage
With the new wellness policies in place, schools in our state are looking at what our children are offered during the day. All vending machines are on timers, and are not accessible during school hours. They are stocked with milk, fruit juice, water and low calorie sports drinks. The snacks machines have more crackers, granola bars, and nutri-grain bars than candy.

Our state inspects the menus and breakfast/lunch options for those receiving federal funding. They have to fit the guidelines for fat and calorie content, or they are penalized. Keep in mind that most districts meals are formulated to fit calorie contents for those that may only be getting one (or two, if breakfast is served) hot meal a day. We have children in our small town who get most of their daily calories from the school lunch program due to inattentive or poverty stricken parents.
4/9/2011 10:22:27 PM

MTATCO's SparkPage
I am an educator and appalled with the products that children eat. My intake is that children lead by example. Pack their lunches with healthier options. If food is too expensive, go to your local food market and buy fresh produce that way you can teach your child to go to the salad bar rather than cafeteria food.
BEVERLYMAVIS
4/9/2011 9:49:55 PM

With regard to the comments about vending machines in school hallways and the sale of junk food in school cafeterias, there is a federal law regulating these sales. Known as the Food of Minimal Nutritional Value law, it prohibits the presence of soda and junk food vending machines in student accessible areas as well as the sale of those types of items during the designated lunch periods. This applies to any school which recieves federal funding for its lunch programs. However, there is some loosening of these restrictions in the upper grades. The same regulations also apply to organizations within the school who may be providing food to students--such as a PTA during a school party. The law was enacted several years ago as a partial response to the childhood obesity dilemma. The quality of the food served in most school cafeterias remains at the mercy of funding and good judgement by the schools nutrition services staff, however.
4/9/2011 11:18:47 AM

DORIANSMAMA's SparkPage
"Lead by example" Easier said than done. The process of healthy eating for children begins just about at birth. What you feed your babies, and then your children, sets the pattern of their cravings and flavor profile desires pretty much for life. If you feed them fresh, organic foods, humanely produced foods, from the time they are able to eat solids, then you set them up to eat a natural, organic and healthy diet that will overcome peer pressure.
Children crave sugary foods because that is what they are fed. You can't force a child to suddenly want to eat apples instead of candy bars just by telling him/her that an apple is "better for you". Children don't care about nutrition. They follow their taste buds.
Teach them early and teach them well, and they will carry those health lessons for the rest of their lives.
4/9/2011 10:16:09 AM

VUEFROMMIDWEST's SparkPage
The school my kids went to didn't have vending machines. It was a small school and it was easy to get involved. We found the number one reason the kids didn't eat the school lunch.. by actual 100% poll.." It doesn't taste good" ...
we got the menu changed to things the kids liked, and Viola, there you are...
It's surprising what the kids asked for..Salads that were more than lettuce and tomatos, packaged bags of celery sticks w/a packet of peanut butter, stuff they ate at home....

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