Wednesday, April 13, 2011

I'm Not One to Keep My Mouth Shut

So, here in Chicago, there is a bit of hullabaloo surrounding a school in the city telling parents that they are no longer allowed to pack and send lunches for their children.  The thinking behind this being that the schools supposedly know what is better for the kids than the parents do.  That, and they feel that children will be getting a more nutritious lunch from the school.  The article cites that it is a "Pop versus Milk" thing.  But if that were actually the case, why not just ban pop?  Why not take out the pop machines and only sell things like milk/juice/lemonade  or water.

What makes anyone think that a blanket decision encompassing all children is the best idea?  Additionally, since when are cafeteria lunches healthy??

What does the average kid eat in their lunch if packed from home?

Sandwich of some kind
Snack of Some kind- bag o'chips, cookies etc
Juice box or can of pop

What would they get in a cafeteria?

Processed and preservative laden meat or pizza
"Fruit" swimming in sugar laden syrup
Pudding or some other form of dessert

Personally for me, I would think the healthier option would continue to be whatever is made at home.  I think it is awfully forward of any school to be deciding they know what is better for a child than a parent does.  And quite honestly, what business is it of any school to tell a parent how or what they should be feeding their kids?  I think the entire idea of this is ludicrous.

I don't have any kids in schools at the moment, but I would assume that most parents would be outraged if someone came along and told them that they no longer had control over what was being fed to their children.  For me, it isn't even the issue of cafeteria lunches costing roughly $2 a day- though I understand that argument as well.  For me personally, and I'm quite certain for a large conglomerate of my friends with children, the issue would be someone else telling me how to parent or what they think is right for my child.

Am I over reacting on this one?  What would you do if your kids came home with a letter tomorrow saying that the school was now going to decide for you, what your child is going to eat every day?

If you would like to read the full article, you can find it here


Heidi said...

Unfortunately, you're right about this problem..

Becky Durham said...

Did you watch Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution last night (or last year when he was in Huntington? The schools don't know any better. The FDA school lunch guidelines are ridiculous and schools are looking for the cheapest options.

I'm sure it's more about controlling lunch time than making sure the kids get healthy food.

The Tubby Triathlete said...

We actually were talking about that over lunch today. No I hadn't seen it, but I'm going to have to HULU it now. I'm sure you're right. It's just totally nuts!

oh_mg said...

I read a counter-argument in the paper yesterday where the principal said it wasn't actually a rule, but a suggestion. I live in the Pilsen neighborhood and I'm sure there are some kids who bring healthy lunches, but the number of kids walking to school every morning drinking bottles of Coke and eating Flaming Hots is heartbreaking. School lunches are absolute junk, but comparatively, it's an improvement over candy bars and chips.