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Old 11-25-2012, 12:30 PM   #31
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Our school used to have caesar salads as an option once a week. Now they have been told they don't include enough protein, so they aren't allowed to serve them as an entree. So, instead a child can get plenty of protein in chicken nuggets or a hot dog? They also went to all skim milk. Now, instead of drinking the milk, the kids go back and forth to the water fountain. I would think 1% milk would be more healthy than none. Then we get to seasonings. Our lunch lady has told me they cannot use salt or butter AT ALL. Kids who used to eat their veggies don't eat them. Again, wouldn't eating green beans with a little salt be more healthy than not eating them at all?

I think it's strange that school lunches are blamed for obese youth. When I was in school, we had full fat milk, white bread, lots of butter and seasonings on the vegetables and cookies or cake almost every day on the lunch line. There was a lot less obesity in schools then. The difference was that most kids got a home cooked meal in the mornings and evenings, and not packaged food and fast food meals. Kids will continue getting fat no matter how low fat and "healthy" we make school lunches.
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Old 11-25-2012, 12:39 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by torinsmom View Post
I think it's strange that school lunches are blamed for obese youth. When I was in school, we had full fat milk, white bread, lots of butter and seasonings on the vegetables and cookies or cake almost every day on the lunch line. There was a lot less obesity in schools then. The difference was that most kids got a home cooked meal in the mornings and evenings, and not packaged food and fast food meals. Kids will continue getting fat no matter how low fat and "healthy" we make school lunches.
Yep. This is true.

They also got more exercise - daily gym classes and good old fashioned playing outside. Far less couch potato TV, no video games, smaller, reasonable food portions, less eating out, etc.

Example...look up at the menu at Panera one of these days - they list the calories per item. It's absolutely shocking the calories for one of their sandwiches - which are huge to begin with even at 1/2 size (you pick two) - and then we couple them with soup? We, as a nation, are out of control with our eating and what we perceive to be a normal portion.

Bottom line, we do need to go back to portion control and correct portion sizing and more healthy eating. Blaming it on school lunches just happens to be convenient. The buck begins and stops at home.
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Old 11-25-2012, 12:41 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by torinsmom View Post
Our school used to have caesar salads as an option once a week. Now they have been told they don't include enough protein, so they aren't allowed to serve them as an entree. So, instead a child can get plenty of protein in chicken nuggets or a hot dog? They also went to all skim milk. Now, instead of drinking the milk, the kids go back and forth to the water fountain. I would think 1% milk would be more healthy than none. Then we get to seasonings. Our lunch lady has told me they cannot use salt or butter AT ALL. Kids who used to eat their veggies don't eat them. Again, wouldn't eating green beans with a little salt be more healthy than not eating them at all?

I think it's strange that school lunches are blamed for obese youth. When I was in school, we had full fat milk, white bread, lots of butter and seasonings on the vegetables and cookies or cake almost every day on the lunch line. There was a lot less obesity in schools then. The difference was that most kids got a home cooked meal in the mornings and evenings, and not packaged food and fast food meals. Kids will continue getting fat no matter how low fat and "healthy" we make school lunches.
No salt or butter at all? Blech.

I wouldn't eat that food, either.
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Old 11-25-2012, 12:42 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by torinsmom View Post
Our school used to have caesar salads as an option once a week. Now they have been told they don't include enough protein, so they aren't allowed to serve them as an entree. So, instead a child can get plenty of protein in chicken nuggets or a hot dog? They also went to all skim milk. Now, instead of drinking the milk, the kids go back and forth to the water fountain. I would think 1% milk would be more healthy than none. Then we get to seasonings. Our lunch lady has told me they cannot use salt or butter AT ALL. Kids who used to eat their veggies don't eat them. Again, wouldn't eating green beans with a little salt be more healthy than not eating them at all?

I think it's strange that school lunches are blamed for obese youth. When I was in school, we had full fat milk, white bread, lots of butter and seasonings on the vegetables and cookies or cake almost every day on the lunch line. There was a lot less obesity in schools then. The difference was that most kids got a home cooked meal in the mornings and evenings, and not packaged food and fast food meals. Kids will continue getting fat no matter how low fat and "healthy" we make school lunches.
But again, don't you think this is the fault of your school? Other schools are able to serve salads just fine. Your school was told it didn't meet the protein requirements so why not fix it so it does? Cheese, chickpeas, chicken breast, tuna, etc would boost the protein. How are the other schools able to serve salads? There is a way to do it, but it sounds like your school isn't trying.

As for the green beans, there are a ton of other seasonings in this world besides butter and salt. It is truly sad that the lunch personal can't come up with a palatable option, or the taste buds of the children will only except veggies with butter or salt.
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Old 11-25-2012, 12:52 PM   #35
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I have to say that most families I work with are on the food stamp program and that I believe automatically puts you on the food stamp program and that means they depend on the school to feed them and not going to Disney all the time.
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Old 11-25-2012, 01:37 PM   #36
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Just FYI, no one has or really can ban donations to charities and that's not what really happened even excepting the charity part.

The City has had a rule about non-packaged food not being allowed to be accepted for donation by City-run homeless shelters, for a whole host of reasons including food safety, unknown ingredients, nutrition, etc. They do accept donation of packaged, labelled food.

Private shelters, charities, churches, etc., can accept whatever they choose.

This has been a rule for a while but it only got press during the aftermath of Sandy, when a lot of people tried to donate stuff and got turned away by the City's Department of Homeless Services, which makes and enforces these rules for City shelters.
This is the article I was particularly referring to: http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2012/03/...-the-homeless/

It did seem a bit slanted and from what you're saying now inaccurate too. That's a relief.

As for school lunches, how does making them more healthy help anyone if the kids won't eat them?
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Old 11-25-2012, 01:43 PM   #37
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At my kids school only the entree starts out on the tray when the child picks it up. Then there is an area with all the sides including several kinds of fruits and veggies. The kids can take whatever they want. That way kids who want several fruits can take them and kids who would just end up chucking the banana don't waste it
That's what my school does too. They keep crates of those presliced apple bags, bags of carrots, bananas, etc. and the kids can go up and get whatever they want. I have quite a few kids that take some to take home with them. It is allowed because they usually have a ton of it left after school and they keep it there for the aftercare kids as well.
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Old 11-25-2012, 02:13 PM   #38
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At my son's school they increased the price of lunch but reduced how much they get. He gets out at 1:30 and by 1:40 has his head in the fridge. He is 6 foot 6 inches and is a stick. It's too bad when well meaning people feel they know what is best for everyone.
Totally off topic- Your son gets out of school at 1:30? what time do classes start? Our school first bell 8:15 but choir is before school at 7:30am and dismissal bell is at 4:15. I cannot imagine getting out of school at 1:30, I know my kids would like that.
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Old 11-25-2012, 02:59 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by almburr View Post
Totally off topic- Your son gets out of school at 1:30? what time do classes start? Our school first bell 8:15 but choir is before school at 7:30am and dismissal bell is at 4:15. I cannot imagine getting out of school at 1:30, I know my kids would like that.
My dd's school dismisses at 1:40, first period is 7:15. Some of the Seniors have half day schedules and are out at 12:00.
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Old 11-25-2012, 03:58 PM   #40
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Something that has always gotten me with the school lunches is that the K ers an 1st graders are given the same size lunch as the high school kids. Many of the little ones do not eat half of the lunch an the high schooler could eat 2 of them easy.

All my kids always came home from school starving of course most of the time I could not get them to eat breakfast an lunch was iffy esp as they got older an could go thru the choice line an get what ever junk they wanted.
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Old 11-25-2012, 04:37 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by luvmy3 View Post
Why can't they just not put it on the tray in the first place and just ask the kids if they want the fruit/veggie?
FWIW, I think the law about not being able to recycle foods that have been on other's tray has been around for awhile. My kid's schools was never allowed to do it.
At the school where I teach, there is a sign at the beginning of the lunch line that they must have certain items on their plate. No leaving it off if you aren't going to eat it.

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Originally Posted by akhenaten View Post
Can't he buy 2 lunches....that is what my dh dd when we were in hs. Over 30 years ago. . And I am sure he ate as soon as he got home too.... It's called teenage growing boys...
But, if the child is on free/reduced lunch, s/he won't have the $$ to buy a second lunch, and the program does not allow for a child to get a second lunch. So there's that option out.

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Originally Posted by LisaR View Post
But again, don't you think this is the fault of your school? Other schools are able to serve salads just fine. Your school was told it didn't meet the protein requirements so why not fix it so it does? Cheese, chickpeas, chicken breast, tuna, etc would boost the protein. How are the other schools able to serve salads? There is a way to do it, but it sounds like your school isn't trying.

As for the green beans, there are a ton of other seasonings in this world besides butter and salt. It is truly sad that the lunch personal can't come up with a palatable option, or the taste buds of the children will only except veggies with butter or salt.
For the salad, I think the PP was referring to having the Caesar salad as an entree. A lot of schools serve a side salad with the entree. It's probably more than just the protein count for a Caesar salad, but I'll get into that in a minute...

For the seasonings, they are limited in their choices.

We had a workshop session during inservice in which the head of our nutrition program spoke to all of us about the changes. (Small groups, about an hour.) Previously, the schools had a minimum calorie goal to reach. If you went over, great, but you had to reach that minimum. Now, it's a window. And it was like 450-550 calories for ES, 550-650 for MS, and 650-750 for HS (and it may be another 100 calories up on each of those. I don't have my notes with me. But, even then, max caloric intake for a day's lunch is 850 for the older kids).

There are so many goals/restrictions. There are only so many starches that can be served, so some elementary schools have to compensate by serving open-faced sandwiches, or they can't give the kids bread one day. All whole wheat products, too. No white potatoes, no white rice, no white bread, no white pasta. Certain number of times per week that fruits/veggies of certain colors must be served. Nothing fried. No ketchup (or it's limited to 1 packet because of the salt content). Sodium content of a patient in kidney failure.

The humor in this?
1. Calorie content is based on GRADE, not AGE.
We are a 7-12 school. Our 7th/8th graders now must have their own lunch so the proper portions can be served. We have a few (I can think of at least 5, off the top of my head) who are 15 or 16 and in 7th or 8th grade. But, as they are 7th/8th graders, they must eat the smaller portion. (We joked at inservice that if those kids found out and complained, then we could say that if they wanted more food, they'd have to pass.) We've also had a 15 year old come up from the elementary school. Can you imagine being 14/15 and having to eat the ES portions? (And please don't turn this into a "wow, your district must just have horrible teachers...these kids have no home life and very little, if any, motivation at home to succeed. One failure through the years can cause one to just stall out, and it doesn't matter how much, sometimes, that you talk, encourage, beg, bribe, whatever to pass. I have had kids over the years who were raised by grandparents because mom and dad both were in prison from drug charges, or live with mom and she works overnights, leaving for work when the kids come home and getting home when the kids leave...and that's just the tip of the iceberg, there.)

2. There are no regulations on breakfast, yet. So they can still have rice crispy treat, or breakfast pizza, or whatever, an call it breakfast. Tell me: in what world is a rice crispy treat, honey bun, or pop tart a filling breakfast?'

3. All this stuff may be healthier, but they aren't used to eating it. It will probably go over better overall with the younger kids, and will be great for them to grow up with the healthier things, and might help them make healthier choices when they are older because they will be used to it. Older kids, though?

My own child? I fix her lunch and send it with her. At least I know she'll eat it.
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Old 11-25-2012, 04:52 PM   #42
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School starts at 8:15 am for my son and he doesn't eat lunch til 1:15 so he is starved by then and they serve very little food on the trays. If he ate at a decent time then he might not be so starved by lunch time. He is a growing teen boy. They don't have snacks in between either unless he brings something from home which he rarely ever does.
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Old 11-25-2012, 05:16 PM   #43
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Volunteer/teacher what we have tried to get the kids to eat and according to the teacher it has worked is we have bribed our kids to eat. Our kids are Pre K so lunch is a little to long so we give them blocks to play with at the table for every bite they take it keeps them occupied and feed
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Old 11-25-2012, 05:28 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by rainydayplay View Post
At the school where I teach, there is a sign at the beginning of the lunch line that they must have certain items on their plate. No leaving it off if you aren't going to eat it.



But, if the child is on free/reduced lunch, s/he won't have the $$ to buy a second lunch, and the program does not allow for a child to get a second lunch. So there's that option out.



For the salad, I think the PP was referring to having the Caesar salad as an entree. A lot of schools serve a side salad with the entree. It's probably more than just the protein count for a Caesar salad, but I'll get into that in a minute...

For the seasonings, they are limited in their choices.

We had a workshop session during inservice in which the head of our nutrition program spoke to all of us about the changes. (Small groups, about an hour.) Previously, the schools had a minimum calorie goal to reach. If you went over, great, but you had to reach that minimum. Now, it's a window. And it was like 450-550 calories for ES, 550-650 for MS, and 650-750 for HS (and it may be another 100 calories up on each of those. I don't have my notes with me. But, even then, max caloric intake for a day's lunch is 850 for the older kids).

There are so many goals/restrictions. There are only so many starches that can be served, so some elementary schools have to compensate by serving open-faced sandwiches, or they can't give the kids bread one day. All whole wheat products, too. No white potatoes, no white rice, no white bread, no white pasta. Certain number of times per week that fruits/veggies of certain colors must be served. Nothing fried. No ketchup (or it's limited to 1 packet because of the salt content). Sodium content of a patient in kidney failure.

The humor in this?
1. Calorie content is based on GRADE, not AGE.
We are a 7-12 school. Our 7th/8th graders now must have their own lunch so the proper portions can be served. We have a few (I can think of at least 5, off the top of my head) who are 15 or 16 and in 7th or 8th grade. But, as they are 7th/8th graders, they must eat the smaller portion. (We joked at inservice that if those kids found out and complained, then we could say that if they wanted more food, they'd have to pass.) We've also had a 15 year old come up from the elementary school. Can you imagine being 14/15 and having to eat the ES portions? (And please don't turn this into a "wow, your district must just have horrible teachers...these kids have no home life and very little, if any, motivation at home to succeed. One failure through the years can cause one to just stall out, and it doesn't matter how much, sometimes, that you talk, encourage, beg, bribe, whatever to pass. I have had kids over the years who were raised by grandparents because mom and dad both were in prison from drug charges, or live with mom and she works overnights, leaving for work when the kids come home and getting home when the kids leave...and that's just the tip of the iceberg, there.)

2. There are no regulations on breakfast, yet. So they can still have rice crispy treat, or breakfast pizza, or whatever, an call it breakfast. Tell me: in what world is a rice crispy treat, honey bun, or pop tart a filling breakfast?'

3. All this stuff may be healthier, but they aren't used to eating it. It will probably go over better overall with the younger kids, and will be great for them to grow up with the healthier things, and might help them make healthier choices when they are older because they will be used to it. Older kids, though?

My own child? I fix her lunch and send it with her. At least I know she'll eat it.
I don't doubt that the new regulations are a PITA. I know from past threads on this same subject that some schools are getting it right, though. They have made adjustments, tweaked spices, added salad bars, and they are making it work.

There will always be two schools of thought on junk food. One believes that it is better to let them eat junk rather than not eat at all. The others believe it is better for them to go hungry than eat junk. Obviously, I believe in the latter. I believe if they are truly "starving" they will eat eventually.
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Old 11-25-2012, 05:33 PM   #45
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Why can't they just not put it on the tray in the first place and just ask the kids if they want the fruit/veggie?
Because it is now the law that we, as lunch ladies are required to put the serving of fruits or veggies on their tray....we are not allowed to ask them if they want it.
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