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News & Politics News & Politics

Complaints Mount Against Gov't's New Lunch Menu...ETA: my response.

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In Wisconsin, high school athletes are complaining about not getting enough to eat each day, due to the skimpy new school lunch menu mandated by the United States Department of Agriculture and First Lady Michelle Obama.

 

The story we published earlier this week on that subject is unfortunately not unique. Students across the country are complaining about the new school lunch regulations.

 

Perhaps the real motive is to starve students into slimming down. Just ask students in Pierre, South Dakota who, too, are in an all-out revolt.

 

"I know a lot of my friends who are just drinking a jug of milk for their lunch. And they are not getting a proper meal," middle school student Samantha Gortmaker told Keloland.com.

 

Despite the fact that the new regulations have increased the cost of a lunch 20 to 25 cents per plate, it’s not pleasing students.

 

Some are throwing away their vegetables while others are adapting to the rules by becoming industrious. In New Bedford, Massachusetts, students have created a black market - for chocolate syrup. The kiddie capitalists are smuggling in bottles of it and selling it by the squeeze, according to SouthCoastToday.com.

 

Nancy Carvalho, director of food services for New Bedford Public Schools, was quoted as saying that hummus and black bean salads have been tough sells in elementary cafeterias. That means even smaller children are going through the day fighting hunger pains, which can never be considered a good thing.

 

One government official tried to put the blame on the students.

 

"One thing I think we need to keep in mind as kids say they're still hungry is that many children aren't used to eating fruits and vegetables at home, much less at school. So it's a change in what they are eating. If they are still hungry, it's that they are not eating all the food that's being offered," USDA Deputy Undersecretary Janey Thornton was quoted as saying.

 

Ms. Thornton just put her finger on the problem. The government is trying to impose a new diet that children are not accustomed to. It’s not reasonable to expect them to either eat what the government deems healthy or go hungry.

 

Many will opt to go hungry, and that’s the government’s fault.

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For those with children who buy school lunches have you children mentioned anything about the options and/or portion sizes for their school lunches?  Have they noticed a change?

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ETA:  I haven't had the opportunity to read all the responses to this post.   I have seen a combination of PRO's and CON's toward the new gov't program.  Most schools have health programs that, in part, teach about healthy eating.  Introducing healthy food choices to kids is a good thing, but taking away a kid's home packed lunch and forcing the kid to purchase a school lunch is an overreach. 

People want kids to take more responsibility for themselves, yet some want to control what and how much a child eats.  There is irony in there somewhere.

by on Sep. 25, 2012 at 10:43 AM
Replies (71-80):
torttia
by on Sep. 26, 2012 at 1:20 AM

YUM! I wish I had lunches like that when I was in school...I graduated in 09....BOO!

That looks like there is more than enough to fill a belly

Quoting Cafe Amanda:

My son started kindergarten this year and he has raved about most of the lunches! I haven't seen one myself yet (am tempted to send him in with a camera one day for a sneak peek, ha) but the menu reflects the healthy changes and sounds good to me. He's got a huge appetite, and hasn't complained about paltry portions, either.

Some recent offerings (if they're legible):



purplerobin
by on Sep. 26, 2012 at 1:31 AM
1 mom liked this


Quoting DSamuels:

It sounds like they went into a "one size fits all" meal. There's a HUGE problem with that. Athletes need more than 850 calories for lunch. Smaller meals might be good for younger kids, they might not be enough food for older kids.

Let's face it, kids don't always eat what is good for them so now they will go hungry like you suggest. WTH good does that do?


Quoting Sisteract:

School lunches should be healthy and calorie appropriate, particularly when the district is making the menus and supplying the food.

Choices:

Starve.

Eat what is served to you.

Make your own lunch.

Take some responsibility for your own child and self (if age appropriate).



School athletes might need more calories than 850, but quite honestly I see a LOT of food go go waste when I substitute (teachers aide) at school districts. I'm talking about fresh apples, chocolate milk, etc. Some of the food served in our district is healthy, some could use a LOT of improvement. Problem we have is too many children in a cafeteria, noise at a volume where you can't hear yourself think, and in one school, nobody puts extra foods (like unopened milk, uneaten apples, bananas) on a cart for kids who are extra hungry.

All that said, I've never heard of any cases of kids starving to death. Schools are on limited budgets and they simply do NOT have the money to serve gargantuan portions. That is where the parent needs to step in, learn to budget, and send healthy snacks to supplement, as well as when they get home. That is what I do, and I am on a limited budget, but I manage to keep high quality food in the house without breaking the bank. I shop sales and coupon.

And if more parents/schools would be willing to put their, not let children bring junk into the schools, parents would cook healthier at home (I am not saying kids should never have junk, but it should be a treat, not a staple item in your diet), and schools/parents took the time to learn how to cook healthy food that tastes good, kids would realize, "oh, it's either an apple or whole grain crackers for a snack or wait until dinner, and NO mom is NOT buying Doritos 6 times this month? Or....so it's eat my salad and roasted chicken and not fill up on 5 biscuits or be hungry until next meal?....maybe it's not my first choice but it beats being super-hungry!"

buttersworth
by Bronze Member on Sep. 26, 2012 at 1:35 AM

that was not me, i grew up eating food made from scratch including only home-baked bread and vegetables from our garden. i became a vegetarian when i was 15 yrs old and didn't eat meat til i was pregnant at 30.

my kids eat everything, some need more veggie encouragement than others

i'm just glad we have food to eat

one point in my life i was homeless and didn't have anythng

we should live life and not obsess over all this superficial stuff

it would be worse to be starving

purplerobin
by on Sep. 26, 2012 at 1:39 AM
1 mom liked this


Quoting thefiregoddess:

Quoting rocketracer:



Let someone take my kids lunch. I'll smack a bitch and make them pay for what they threw out.

My kid goes to a 18k a year private school. If the birthday cupcake I sent with her with spaghettti and whatever she wants on her birthday is too bad, TOO FUCKING BAD

My child, my childs body.

More government interference.

These kids are used to eating garbage, you cant just snap them into something 'healthy'. Little kids might change faster.. they really need to think this shit through.

Mmhmm, ghettogirl, and the "bitch" you smacked would sue the living fuck out of you and I'd be glad to see them do it.

I agree you should be able to send what your child wants on her birthday, but a school, public OR private has a right to decide what is appropriate to bring into their schools....nothing wrong with a little birthday cake or a treat, I've seen firsthand too many parents that send their kids with nothing but crap on a daily basis. If you dont like a schools policy on food, you are welcome to find a different school. If YOU don't like it.....SHOVE IT UP YOUR ASS.

Your child, your child's body? Yes your CHILD'S body not yours. Which means that your child most likely does not have all the information/maturity/experience needed to make informed choices about his/her diet.  Which means, you as the parent have a responsibility to be vigilant and protective of your child's nutrition. If you are consistently giving your child garbage, it isn't fair to your child because you are setting them up for health problems down the road and poor eating habits to boot.

manicMOM_DLC
by on Sep. 26, 2012 at 2:29 AM
1 mom liked this

I guess school could offer fresh fruits in various places throughout the school to prevent hunger pains.  hunger does negatively affect learning, and most kids will cave and eat the damn apple if they are hungry enough. 

if this is an issue when I get my own classroom ( i am studying to be a teacher) I think I will make it a point to have an assortment of various fresh fruits and veggies available for a cheap purchase or ask parents for a monthly donation of $.50-$1/month to help cover the expenses.

LostTheSlipper
by on Sep. 26, 2012 at 2:49 AM


Quoting Cafe Amanda:

My son started kindergarten this year and he has raved about most of the lunches! I haven't seen one myself yet (am tempted to send him in with a camera one day for a sneak peek, ha) but the menu reflects the healthy changes and sounds good to me. He's got a huge appetite, and hasn't complained about paltry portions, either.

Some recent offerings (if they're legible):


Seems pretty decent but broccoli florettes on days they serve "breakfast"? LOL

LucyMom08
by Silver Member on Sep. 26, 2012 at 2:51 AM
If they are hungry, they'll eat...
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
LucyMom08
by Silver Member on Sep. 26, 2012 at 2:58 AM
1 mom liked this
Why are people so pissed about kids eating healthier at school?
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
sammiesmom2000
by on Sep. 26, 2012 at 4:21 AM
My daughters school offers huge salads so my kids eat those.
fairy_fan
by on Sep. 26, 2012 at 6:10 AM
1 mom liked this

My kids have complained about portion sizes but mostly they're complaining about TASTE.  They say that the food is very bland.  There are absolutely NO seasonings on anything.  No one can tell me that when they cook at home, they use NO seasoning of any kind.  They have complained that the spaghetti and sauce taste like water, (same for all soups/chili/and other pasta dishes) the veggies have NO taste at all, they say all the meats taste the same from a hamburger to chicken, it just kind of is there until you add ketchup or mustard to them, even when the menu lists them as BBQ or grilled.   

They attend different schools in the same district.  They complain that the schools are using a different supplier for the milk and it tastes spoiled.  So far, every day that my kids have actually attempted to eat their school lunches this year, they have been sent home by the school nurse for vomiting.    

And let's talk about the portions.  My DD sent me pictures via text of her friends lunches every day last week.  (My kids are now taking their lunches.)  
Monday her friend had 2 chicken strips, 4 french fries, and 2 orange wedges, along with her milk.  
Tuesday she had 1 oversize cheese stick, a piece of cauliflower, a piece of broccoli, and 2 carrots to make up her "California blend veggies" a piece of jello that looked about the size of 2 quarters with what she said was supposed to be pears but they were so small I couldn't see them, and a single celery stick, along with her carton of milk.
Wednesday she had HALF a grilled cheese, 2 tomato slices, a brownie bite (like the Hostess Brownie Bites...one) and her milk.
Thursday, the ONLY day Salad Bar is available at our schools, she had a decent sized salad.
Friday they had pizza.  It was a mini cheese pizza about the size of my fist, a scoop of mixed fruit all diced up and in syrup, and their milk.  

There is no way that is enough for middle/high school kids.  Maybe the elementary kids, but not for the teenagers.  

  

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