Healthy Garbage Cans

I was at a grant meeting for my daughter’s school yesterday and the conversation turned to school cafeteria food and the effect the new federal school lunch guidelines are having. The phrase ‘healthy garbage cans’ came up to give the general picture that the children are not accepting the changes well and that much of the food is going into the garbage. The general consensus of the group was that while the changes in the guidelines were good the immediacy of implementation is tough for students to deal with.

Some of the changes you are probably going to hear from your children include:

  • The pizza is smaller and there is no peperoni. The new guidelines dictate a smaller size, whole grain crust and only 1 slice of peperoni.
  • The chocolate milk tastes different. Older children seem to like it since it is more ‘chocolately’ while younger children do not since it is not as sweet. Some districts like Pembroke have removed it as an option!
  • Iceberg lettuce is not allowed
  • Green Beans are not a vegetable option
  • All pasta and bread must be whole grain
  • Here is what I consider the killer…PB&J can no longer be offered every day!

I agree with the changes as a means to help fight the obesity epidemic occurring in our country, but trying to do it in one step is pretty drastic. Add all these changes to the changes in school curriculum, mandated anti-bullying efforts and teaching practices and it will be one crazy year for everyone. Welcome back to school and Federal intelligence to go along with ‘race-to-the-top’ and ‘no child left behind’!


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Filed under Nutrition Education, Parenting

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