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Attention all Parents: What can schools do to help your children to be healthier?

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Old 02-22-2006, 06:54 PM   #1
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Exclamation Attention all Parents: What can schools do to help your children to be healthier?

Our schools are soon being mandated to become "Healthy Schools" I am on a committee at our school that is in charge of coming up with strategies we can implement to give kids healthy options and encourage healthy lifestyles.

What would you like to see public schools do to help your kids be healthier?
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Old 02-22-2006, 06:57 PM   #2
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a variety of fruits and veggies.. like little snack packs of some celery sticks and carrots with a healthy dip... something a long that line.

if it's a cafeteria school.. where the students get served by staff i think each meal should come with an apple/orange/bananna
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Old 02-22-2006, 07:07 PM   #3
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The problem with serving healthy food in cafeteria is presentation. As parents we know what choices to make and how to present and prepare it for our kids. Plopping some carrots on a plate is gonna do nothing for a child. Carrots and ranch will. Cheese and Crackers will. An apple won't, but Apple wedges will. Apple wedges in a FF dip would be even more appetizing. No fried foods please. There are tons of healthy foods out there. It's funny that when presented, my kids will chose the healthy snack. I promise though with what the school offers, they reject it.
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Old 02-22-2006, 07:15 PM   #4
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I'd also like to see organic foods, but I suppose that's a stretch...
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Old 02-22-2006, 08:19 PM   #5
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-Nothing fried
-no sodas (not even diet)
-no snack machines unless they are filled with healthy snacks
-no pizza's (and the reason why I say that is because kids generally get it on their own quite a bit, and the cafe always serves it very greasy, so you might as well just eliminate it)
-go with fruits and veggies, and if you can, try to have a very organic meals. I've heard of several schools going organic, so you might want to do some research there to see how they managed this, and what their budget was like.
-have make-your-own-sandwich bar, with several different breads instead of white. Could have a pita, wraps, etc.
-can have posters of foods and their benefits up on the wall. Example: milk, calcium etc.....it just be an interesting way to pass the time in the cafe.

Hope these are useful!
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Old 02-22-2006, 08:43 PM   #6
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I love the make your own sandwich bar! I think my students would like that!
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Old 02-22-2006, 08:46 PM   #7
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One thing I find really frustrating is the cost difference between unhealthy food and healthy food. It costs more to eat healthy because fat and sugar are cheap! Why woud the kids spend 1.50 on 500ml of milk when they can buy 2L of coke for 99 cents?
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Old 02-22-2006, 09:03 PM   #8
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Yeah, I def see your point. Which is why, even though I'm aware of some schools going totally organic, you'll have to research into how they did it on their budget. I realize you're in Canda, so I don't know if ya'll have the same thing up there. But if kids cannot afford the meals, schools do have, oh what did they call it in my day......free meal vouchers or something? It's basically a pro/con situation. Let us know how it all turned out!
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Old 02-22-2006, 09:06 PM   #9
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my first plan is to try to get the parent council to make soup or something healthy and inexpensive once a month and donate it so we can sell it for cheap!
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Old 02-22-2006, 09:10 PM   #10
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Our school has a "hot lunch day" once a week. We get a list sent home per term with what is being served every Tuesday and the cost. You and your child decide what they want and what days and pay the amount in advance. What I like about these lunches is that they try to make them healthier for the kids than what they were serving lastyear (Taco Bell etc was on the menus lastyear)! They serve chicken wraps (whole wheat), pizza on whole wheat crust etc.. They are all whole wheat and served with apple slices and choice of chocolate milk or white milk (no pop or juice)! My daughter does not like whole wheat bread, but she hasnt even noticed or said anything to me about them serving her wholewheat
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Old 02-22-2006, 09:12 PM   #11
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Schools feed kids what they know the kids will eat. If they start plopping down carrots and apples in front of them, they know the kids will go hungry all day because they're not gonna eat that stuff.

If you want your kids to eat healthy at school, the best thing to do is pack their lunch every day.
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Old 02-22-2006, 09:16 PM   #12
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I don't know about that LLV, I'm in a high school and i's FRIGHTENING what these kids have in their lunch. My friends volunteer to do lunch duty at the local elementary school and say the same thing! Parents aren't doing a much better job feeding their kids sometimes!
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Old 02-22-2006, 09:21 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LLV
Schools feed kids what they know the kids will eat. If they start plopping down carrots and apples in front of them, they know the kids will go hungry all day because they're not gonna eat that stuff.

If you want your kids to eat healthy at school, the best thing to do is pack their lunch every day.

That goes back to what I said. It's selection and presentation. Kids will eat healthy, you just can't serve it to them like you do adults.
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Old 02-22-2006, 09:24 PM   #14
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I think a big part of it is going to be educating parents... we're thinkin about having a dinner at school and inviting the parents and having them listen to a presentation about tips for feeding kids healthy foods.

My kids eat what we eat- it's not diet food, it's just part of our lives now and they don't complain at all!
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Old 02-22-2006, 09:55 PM   #15
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i think there should be no fast food chains allowed in schools (ie taco belle, pizza hut etc).

i know from being in a college dorm for 4 years- the unhealthy stuff tasted the best. you can't really ruin pizza and fries but their attempts at healthy food were disasterous. you cannot used canned peas. blech. even i dont eat those. i think the focus should be on fresh, tastey food!!! presentation matters too of course. but "steamed corn" or whatever that is really mush with water isnt going to entice ANYONE to eat it.

some suggestions

baby carrots with a ff ranch dipper
apple slices and carmel dipper (not a ton of carmel! like 100 cals worth)
fresh grapes, bannanas, oranges

pita pockets (with tuna, chicken whatever!)
stir fry- low oil! with snap peas and carrots, bell peppers etc
whole wheat spagettii with red sauce and some protien- maybe tofu or chicken option


the prob with all this is that the fast, processed foods are way cheaper. even if your school wants to feed the kids better- it may not be in the budget.

desserts-
"bannana split"- half a banana with chocloate syrup, crushed peanuts and a dab of light whipped cream
jello and sf jello
fruit salad (no gross fruit either!! yummy fresh strawberries, grapes, *ripe* melon etc

and i agree - no soda!

milk, choc milk, lactaid or water!
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