Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Let's do School Lunch

I just got back from taking Jonah (my middle child) his lunch.  My kids taking their lunches is a daily routine at my house.  I remember taking my lunch every once in awhile but not everyday.  Gretchen and I ate lunch at Jonah's school one day.  I knew instantly why he takes his lunch.  What was suppose to be spaghetti wasn't.  What I received on my styrofoam tray was over cooked bloated soggy noodles with a questionable tomato sauce.  One bite was all I could take.  After getting over my initial nauseousness, I could not help but to think that some of these kids have to eat this stuff everyday.  I know that cooking for 400 to 1200 kids is a tough task but that's the cooks' jobs.  Thinking back to when I substitute taught, I seldom ate in the "cafe-gym-atorium" (Ray Romano).   I tried the "pizza" and the "chicken" nuggets.  Oy!  I, also, remember a lot of food covered trays being dumped at the end of lunch.

I thought a key to a healthy mind was a healthy diet.  If that is true, why do our kids have to suffer through their school years eating disgusting food.  Childhood obesity is a big topic right now.  I believe a lot of that has to do with what is being cooked at home in America.  But that is another topic all together.  Kids are being raised learning that dinner comes from a box.  We should be teaching them how to eat fresh foods that are much more healthy.

Health class?  I remember health class...  four basic foods groups  (later changed to five).  That's all I remember.  How about a class that teaches kids about food and how to prepare it?  I know you are saying " yeah it sounds good but how ya gonna pay for it?"  It always comes down to money.

Our entire school system is in shambles.  Rich schools have every thing they want while poor schools have nothing.  And when I say "nothing" I mean "NOTHING."  Take a unscheduled tour of some these schools.  I believe you would be shocked.  I know was.  I guess the biggest problem is that we just turn our heads.  We (as a society) live for the betterment of ourselves.  Self preservation, I suppose.  As long as out kids are okay.  And that is the exact attitude that has our country in the "mess" that we in.  (Side note:  I'm finding that in writing this blog, that I have to use a lot of restraint from using "colorful" language. )  There have been stories about rich schools buying new desks because they had extra money and the poor schools went the dump and pulled out the rich schools discarded desks because those were better than what they had.

The federal government requires that our children learn certain things. They expect the individual school districts to teach these.  But they don't provide the resources to do so.  It seems that every time there is a budget cut, School funding is a the top of the list.  We have finally started paying teachers more money and then we cut the number of teachers.  Our school buildings are outdated.  So our education system needs money. In the past, we created a new tax on the poor to fund the monetary deficiencies called :the lottery."

I believe it is time to take divide the pie evenly.    All schools should receive the same amount of tax money.  Oops I said the "T" word.  I'm not big on taxes.  Not because  I don't believe in them but because of the waste that we spend it on.  It's coming up on 10 years now that this country has been in Afghanistan and Iraq isn't far behind.  The amount of money this country has spent on these wars is staggering.  I think it's time to get out and start building up our own country.  We can start by giving our schools what they need: teachers, supplies, security, transportation, buildings and good nutritious meals.  And maybe just maybe America will stay number one.

This was what was on  my mind today.


  1. As someone who eats school food daily, one word AMEN.

  2. Check out Jamie Oliver's work on the food system in England. It is pretty impressive.

  3. I have been teacher for 15 yrs and have eaten the school lunch once! Did you know ketchup is considered a vegetable by some school districts?