Wednesday, May 03, 2006

It's still the "real thing," just not in schools

I get called "liberal" (??) because I've long ranted (on my blog and on political message boards) about getting healthier food and drinks in public schools. Opponents argue that it's not government's place to make sure our kids are eating healthy, it's the parents' responsibility. I've always said BULLSHIT to that... if that's the case, then why not just make education the parents' responsibility too?

If students bringing their own lunch, fine... but I'd rather schools didn't make junk food available to them. School is an institution of learning, so let kids learn good nutrition.

It's sad, but there are parents who simply can't (or won't) provide their kids with nutritious foods - so for some, school lunch is the only opportunity to get a balanced meal.

Today, the soft drink industry has taken a step toward helping fix the problem, although it was likely about as voluntary as a shotgun wedding.

Here's the story.

Finally, a move in the right direction. Too bad it's about 10 years too late to benefit my daughter.


Blogarita said...

Back in the day (and I do mean back), there was virtually no junk food to be had in school, especially on the elementary level. We had excellent school cooks (who really did cook) and the food was usually good and usually fairly healthy. Taking lunch from home was a novelty for most of us, because our parents preferred we get a hot, nutritious (and cheap, then) lunch at school.

Most families I know who have kids in school now are sending lunches with them, both to combat the high cost of school lunches and the lack of nutrition those lunches provide. But that doesn't keep kids from "supplementing" their lunch with junk if it's being sold in the cafeteria.

I agree with this new initiative. It can only be for the good of our kids.

Eve said...

I agree 100%. Luckily, mine are little and I have control as I can send them to school with a healthy lunch.

They shouldn't have access to all of that crap. I hate that...

~The Goofy Ass Chick said...

I'm still young enough to remember that lunches were definitely not healthy when I was in school. Hell, in fact a year after I graduated they put a Taco Bell/Pizza Hut into the cafeteria thereby creating a food court affect. I'm not even joking. It has since gone away but it just goes to show why kids are obese.

Fantastagirl said...

They have milk machines in our Middle and High Schools - the pop machines are only "on" during from after school 4:00 until 7:30 before school... They are taking the "ala carte" away - as the kids could buy - little debbie snack cakes, candy bars, etc instead of lunch. They will leave the salad bar in.

In the elementary schools - they are pretty decent - but our district made the decision to not count ketchup as a vegetable this past year - and that has helped. they also received a grant where each day the kids get a new or different fruit or veggie to try in the afternoon as a snack.

I'm lucky - my kids actually like fruit - and Pan's favorite snack is apple slices...

Kimmy said...

Dave, I so agree. We talked about this on the air today. However, my partner took issue with the fact that they were only serving fat-free and low-fat milk in elementary and middle schools. He felt that WHOLE milk should be allowed. Anyone? Anyone?

Lee Ann said...

We didn't have soda in our schools. It was milk and orange juice. How did we survive?

StringMan said...

It's a good start. Now if they can get all those little fatties running around the track regularly, we can make an even bigger dent in the issue.

prodgodq said...

Dave -

I noticed in your post that you
wrote "pubic" as opposed to
"public" schools.


And yes, I am a buttface for pointing it out


prodgodq said...

Dave -

I noticed in your post that you
wrote "pubic" as opposed to
"public" schools.


And yes, I am a buttface for pointing it out


~Tamara Ann~ said...

When I was in school, the only pop machine was located in the Junior/Senior lounge. Today we have several pop/chip/candy machines which is bull shit. They have even cut their milk from 2% to skim so they can offer more sweets to the children. And they wonder why the kids are so hyper and can't concentrate during school hours? They won't remove the machines because they make to much money for the school, which is just wrong!

Lightning Bug's Butt said...

I don't know. I think schools should be focusing on education. When they get that right -- that is, when kids can read, peform arithmetic and identify all 50 states on a map -- then they can worry about diet.

It's Me, Maven... said...

Being a product of a 1970s and 1980s upbringing... I can recall (vaguely) about restrictions on cartoon characters marketing foods towards a child audience--and conversely "Reaganomics," where ketchup constituted a vegetable in the school lunch programs.

The sad thing today is, economically, the things which are cheapest and most readily available for low income families are usually the food choices highest in carbs, sugars and fat.

What is going to have to take place isn't a simple restructuring of the food pyramid, it's going to take a complete overhaul, a dietary revolution if you will.

Dave Morris said...

Lightning Bug - I get your point. Thing is, teachers aren't being taken away from teaching to prepare meals or make menus... that's a whole different issue. We have "nutrition specialists" to do that. (GOD those hair nets used to turn me on) It's just as easy to ask a fruit truck to back up to the school as it is a potato chip or candy truck. No more excuses.

Chicken said...

When I went to school we had nutritious meals. They would make us eat our veggies before we could go to recess.

So if they fed kids veggies back back then why they can't they do it now?

❉ pixie ❉ said...

This definately makes me happy. Long time overdue IMO. I remember actually enjoying the food at school (and not just the junk). I would wait through the line just for a single order of mashed potatoes & gravy. Our young generation is too sedentary to be exposed to all that crap daily. Get them off their asses and put a piece of fruit in their hand. Otherwise, they'll croak long before they're due.