Tomorrow is NB's first day of kindergarten and I don't know if this is a local area thing or an all over thing, but a lot of our schools have started banning "junk" food. My brother's high school banned school "supplied" junk food a few years ago and replaced all the sodas in vending machines with bottled waters, gator aid, and that kind of thing. Same thing with the snacks. NB's school, despite a seeming obsession with chocolate milk, has done the same thing.
And it's not just school supplied anymore either. We decided to pack NB's lunch and snack most days because she is VERY picky. Example: If the school serves ham and cheese, she will refuse to eat it, even though she likes it because, "It's not the same as OUR ham and cheese." At her orientation we were given a packet of information, including a list of "acceptable" items for lunches and snacks. If she is bringing her own snacks we are responsible for making sure it is a healthy snack and the only drink she is allowed to bring for snack time is bottled water. The same goes for her lunches, except I can send juice or something in her thermos, but no soda or carbonated beverages of any kind.
A friend of mine, who's little girl starts K at another school got an even more detailed list. Only baked chips are allowed, absolutely NO candy or cookies or sweets of any kind, etc.
Now don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining really. I think it's pretty awesome that the schools in our area are starting to take an interest in nutrition, but really.... NO COOKIES??! Ever?
I kind of feel that if NB has a pretty balanced, solid, healthy lunch that it's not really harming her to throw in a couple of oreos now and again.
Do they do this at schools in your areas?
Far be it from me to dictate how anyone else parents, but I also take issue with the suggestion that getting my kid to not eat sugar at school is a simple matter of me as the parent just having "to teach [my kid] about healthy eating." Ah, but the devils advocate in me must step forward. Yes, of course you have and yes, of course you do, and for some people it's not a matter of knowledge but neurochemical issues.
But the other kids in your class should not be banned from sugar the way we ban peanuts because of Dragon's issue. It's not life or death. It's not safety. It fails to meet the litmus test requirements.
Yes, you have strong feelings on this issue. You live with it. I empathize with you very very much, and I do know one other adult who fits what you describe, and at least a half dozen kids.
Maybe it is the responsibility of the school, to whatever extent they are able, to forbid trading (our school does). But to forbid "unhealthy" foods for lunches *brought from home* is a giant can of very subjective worms that I strongly feel the school board has any grounds to open.
Ok, I'm just feeling confused here. I'm not trying to be dense, but I really don't get why it is a problem if schools ban certain foods. I mean, so what? If you're cool with them having a few cookies, why can they not have it when they're home? Do people feel the same way about dress codes? That schools shouldn't be allowed to make rules about what kids can and cannot wear? It just seems like a limited time for me, and like there are many good reasons to do it, and I can't figure out what the problem is. Can somebody help me out (end of semester, must be brain dead)?
I don't see the school as a baby sitter. Kids go there to learn. Yes, we expect them to be safe there, but that's because we spend lots of tax dollars on them. We don't have a choice. I don't think public schools should do anything other than teach my kid and resolve issues with other students. They shouldn't even be required to provide food. When I was a kid, and went to catholic school for a few years, they didn't even offer lunch. You HAD to bring your own. The first time I saw a school provided lunch I thought it was the weirdest thing.
But if parents choose to let their kid have a Twinkie once a week or something as a treat, WTF? What's next? Telling people what their kids can eat at home? Regulating what they can read or watch on TV?
Here's how I look at it: schools have a great deal of responsibility for creating an effective learning environment. As a result, schools need a great deal of room to draw limits around what comes into the learning environment. For example, my kid can't bring his light-up Buzz Lightyear doll to school, and if he does he has to stow it somewhere out of reach for the day, because light-up Buzz Lightyear dolls aren't allowed in the classroom, because they're distracting. I don't see it as much different than saying kids can't bring candy to school, and if they do they have to stow it for the day, because it can be really distracting. It's not a value judgment on parents who give their kids light-up Buzz Lightyear dolls when the school asks me not to send one to school with my kid, and it's likewise not a value judgment on what parents might choose to feed their kids at home if they ask parents not to send certain foods to school. To me, anyway.
But I'd much rather feel a little defensive that have her sitting between two kids that have just had a can of Coke for lunch and a couple of pixie sticks.
Why? Chances are, those two kids are going to be miserable SOB's for their teacher. And test badly. But it's not like they're going to dip your kid in sugar and consume him or her in a dark pagan ritual sacrifice to their dread Lord Sucrose.
In short, not a safety issue.