Friday, June 15, 2012

School Lunches Exposed

Just saw this on the BBC website: NeverSeconds blogger Martha Payne school dinner photo ban lifted. This is the blog: NeverSeconds. In the blog, a nine-year old posted pictures of her rather dismal school cafeteria lunches, until the school told her to stop. Take a look at both the article and the blog, well worth it!
Image from BBC article.
Makes me wonder what way Belgian school cafeteria lunches have gone. When I was a kid I did not eat many lunches at school because I walked home to take lunch there. But on the odd times I did, I always liked it. Lunch was served family style, in big bowls that went around the table. There was always a soup, followed by a main course consisting of meat/fish-potato/pasta/rice-vegetable/salad. It was finished off with a dessert, like a fruit salad (from the can), a custard or an ice cream cone. The whole was washed down with a small glass of sparkling water or soda, a liter bottle serving about four.

When I went to teaching college (to be a PhysEd and Biology teacher) I took lunch at the neighboring high school. As you can imagine, with a curriculum that included several hours of rigorous physical activity each day, we were always hungry. We developed and nurtured excellent relationships with the kitchen personnel (the "lunch ladies") and they loved us if nothing else for our appetites. Maybe any food goes down when you're young and really hungry, but I recall that the food was always decent, nutritious and balanced, maybe not up to par with my mom's excellent cuisine but certainly good enough.

When I worked at Minneapolis Public Schools I saw the food they served. Not pretty. According to my boys, St. Paul Public Schools is not much better, especially the pizza, which is drenched with fat. I feel bad for the kids who have to eat the crap they offer nowadays and who get a gag order imposed on them when they speak up.