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Chicago School Bags the Bagged Lunch

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Do you pack a lunch for your child? A Chicago school has banned lunches brought from home in an initiative to encourage healthier eating. Would your kids eat their school's served meal or go hungry?

Packed lunch

Little Village Academy, a public school on Chicago's West Side, has ruled that students are not allowed to bring lunches from home.

Principal Elsa Carmona told the L.A. Times the policy was created six years ago after she saw kids brining "bottles of soda and flaming hot chips" on school field trips.

"At Little Village, most students must take the meals served in the cafeteria or go hungry or both. During a recent visit to the school, dozens of students took the lunch, but threw most of it in the garbage uneaten," reports the L.A. Times, adding, "Though CPS (Chicago Public Schools) has improved the nutritional quality of its meals this year, it also has seen a drop-off in meal participation among students, many of whom say the food "astes bad."

Momlogic wants to know: What's the best way for schools to encourage healthy eating?

next: Study: As New Mom's Health Slips, Dad's Stays the Same
8 comments so far | Post a comment now
Rachel April 11, 2011, 5:20 PM

I’m a teacher — when I forget my lunch, I go hungry instead of eating the school food. I wouldn’t expect my child to eat it either. As I teach in one of the ten largest school districts in the nation, I imagine Chicago’s school lunches are made in a similar fashion and taste just as bad.

X April 11, 2011, 6:54 PM

what about the poor allergy kids?

Anna April 11, 2011, 11:43 PM

I will have to say that My children eat school lunches. They seem to think some of it is ok. The problem I have with forcing children to eat school lunches is that some parents can not afford it. I know that they are rather inexpensive but if you have multable children it is more cost effecient to pack a meal from home. I know that I will probably have to do that soon. My husband just lost his job.

dea April 12, 2011, 6:18 PM

I send a far healthier lunch for my daughter than any school would serve and I wouldn’t let her eat the school lunch. The school could just ban soft drinks and junk foods rather than ban the lunches themselves!

barcode generator April 13, 2011, 2:14 AM

I also think that there should ban on junk foods in school not on home food because some parents can afford but not all even taste and quality of school food is not sure to be good.

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Stacey Allaire April 13, 2011, 6:16 AM

What if you can’t afford to purchase the school lunch? Or what if you made a healthier lunch for your children. I’m all for kids growing up with healthy eating options, but parents should be able to have choices.

Paula April 13, 2011, 8:06 AM

While I think it’s important for the schools to promote healthier eating, I don’t think this is the way to go about it. I’d also be skeptical as to what they feel is healthy. I’m sure their lunches are better than soda and chips, but not necessarily as healthy as a lunch I’d send with my child. I let my child buy lunch on certain days when it’s something she likes. But I send a healthy lunch the rest of the days. I don’t want her eating the school lunches every day because my lunches are healthier and also it is less expensive for me to send a lunch.

I don’t think parents should be forced to pay for a school lunch for their child. And I definitely don’t think that all parents should be punished for the actions of some. This is just going way too far.

Gigi April 17, 2011, 6:10 AM

I get the distinct impression this has less to do with health than with money. Kids aren’t buying lunch, the schools lose money, so they turn nanny and decide that parents are too stupid to be trusted so they’ll take the choice away and force those stupid parents to buy the school lunch. Nice racket and it works perfectly in our society today where everyone feels it’s their duty to save others from themselves.

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