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lunch box monitors

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Muffyxx Report 19 Mar 2013 23:44

do you think it's right that schools can send back items in a lunch box that they perceive as *wrong*.........

Whose responsibility is it to decide what your child eats............yours or the state?

I received a letter today warning me of *banned additions* to my child's lunch box.

None of which actually have been in it. it right for the school to be the guardians of what i feed my child......taking into consideration other foods she may be eating outside of school

or should we just sit back and allow them to do this?

I'm going from a point of principle rather than fact as I always put a lot of thought into my daughters lunch.........but it DOES still leave a nasty taste in my mouth that the school can dictate something so fundamental.........they are there to teach my child......not bloody feed her.


jax Report 20 Mar 2013 00:04

I cant remember what went in my kids lunchboxes, probably banned things :-D

Maybe they should insist all kids stay for school dinners, no choice and forced to eat everything...which I am sure we had to do back in the 60s


+++DetEcTive+++ Report 20 Mar 2013 00:05

It's better to send a child to school with 'banned' foods in their lunch boxes which they will eat, rather than with approved snacks they won't!

Possibly the only exception is where a Primary school has a student with a nut allergy where they might ban that from other's lunch boxes. Young children do swap but are too young to recognise the dangers


LadyScozz Report 20 Mar 2013 00:44

Many Aussie schools have a "banned food" list.

The list is mostly foods that many children are allergic to, like peanuts, they don't want to take the chance that some children would exchange lunches & one of them get ill.

Some of my cousins in the UK were very concerned about food choices their children had for lunch...... the kids would eat chips every day if they were on the menu ~ not many children would choose a "healthy" lunch.

I remember the UK school dinners (only from primary school), the only thing I liked was the soup.


maggiewinchester Report 20 Mar 2013 00:53

Considering the fact that schools tend get the food they serve as school dinners from the cheapest source, I would find a list of 'banned' food for lunch boxes the height of hypocrasy!!

I can see why peanuts could be banned, but other things - no.

It's not like the food is made at the school, so, as parents you could have some say, and know where the food came from. It's now shipped in from factories.

When my children were at school, they were entitled to free school meals, but I refused to let them have them. As I worked there, I could see what tins etc the food came out of, and how dishes were 'created'. :-|

A 'pizza' consisted of a pizzza base, thick layer of tomato ketchup and layers of 'Kraft' cheese!! Yuck!
My eldest had school dinners once - a beefburger. She thought it would be like mine - home made (and I'm no cook), but it was so foul, she took a bite and threw up there and then!


Jean Report 20 Mar 2013 01:32

the parent should decide what goes into a childs lunch box, not the school. they are there to teach! not judge on what a child has for his or hers lunch. lesson over, its play time.... :-P


supercrutch Report 20 Mar 2013 01:48

Whooops I am the one who agrees with the idea in principle.

We were/are sensible Mothers but remember those that aren't.

I've seen what parents deem as acceptable as a packed lunch:

Crisps, sausage rolls, chocolate bars, sweets and a drink laden with sugar and additives.

I believe the school has every right to complain to the parent who sends their child to school with that lot. I wouldn't want to handle a kid who was on a sugar high for the afternoon. I wouldn't want to be the dentist who had to extract rotten teeth either.

Yes you can say 'the child will eat it' but what if they are given the same class of foods for their main meal too?

Sadly not all parents unnderstand nutrition and some are just damn lazy.

So my friends I think the school is right :-P

Silly Sausage

Silly Sausage Report 20 Mar 2013 09:08

This came about when my daughter was at primary school she is nearly 21 :-D

Itsmytelly took to imho the negivitive view of " who are they to tell me what my kids eat"

At the time I was working as a cook in school kitchens and we was desperately trying to promote healthier eatting. Now as Sue said we are senible parents..hmmmm not so before this my child went to school with a chrisps sandwich sausage roll choc biscult for lunch as thats is what she liked to eat, luckily for me my daughter had all her chairs round the table and actually took on board what was being said to her at school and even if I had tried to send her in with additions to her old lunch box she would of refused. Having been introduced to fruit from a young age she sort of by passed it till this time I am happy to say so for me it was a result.
This country has a hughed problem with obeseity (sp) in children and adults so I too support schools in this.


AnninGlos Report 20 Mar 2013 10:10

I can see both sides in this but I do have a sympathy for the schools, especially with regard to sugary food and sugar highs in the afternoon.

As has already been said, informed parents have no need of advice (or shouldn't have) but some will be easily swayed by a child's constant 'moaning' about wanting to take chocolate etc because "XYZ always has chocolate and it is not fair". If there is a rule in place that chocolate is not acceptable in lunch boxes, this makes it easier for parents to not be swayed by child pressure.

There is a huge problem with child obesity and I am appalled at the number of little ones being pushed around in their buggies while munching on a pasty, doughnut or sausage roll. For a start many of these are old enough to be walking (OK slower for parents but good for the child) and these children are already showing signs of putting on weight. slightly off topic from schools so sorry Muffy, but part of the same problem.

I suppose it would not be acceptable to target one section of society and not the other so responsible parents as well as those who don't know or don't care have to be targetted.

So while feeling sorry for parents who already conform and encourage their children in healthy eating, I agree with the schools trying to do something about the health of the others.

I wonder if they have already tried other routes such as running healthy eating forums for parents. Probably those most in need wouldn't attend.


Sharron Report 20 Mar 2013 10:25

If you are feeding your own child properly it is going to be easier for you to carry on doing so if your child does not see other children enjoying muck on a daily basis.


~Lynda~ Report 20 Mar 2013 10:34

If only it were that simple for children to have nutritious & healthy foods.

Being logical, schools can't control what children are given in lunch boxes, how can they say little Billy can't have that, but can have this, but Mary can have this but not that, with allergies, special diets and religion coming into it, it isn't really possible for a school to say what a child should eat.

Who worries that little Tommy, when on school holidays, has sod all to eat, because his Mum/Dad can't afford it, but will send a note home that he brought in a sausage roll with his lunch, lucky Tommy I say.

I sometimes think that we live in la la land, schools worry about what kids bring in to lunch, when at school but nobody worries that kids don't eat enough, when out of school. Problem is with dinner ladies, they aren't nutritionists, but spend a lot of time telling children what they can or can't eat, or if they should eat all of there dinner up, whether hungry or not. Not getting at dinner ladies, I've been one, but couldn't believe how some of them were so concerned that children didn't eat every morsel.

Schools are there for our children to be taught, not to control what they eat/don't eat. If there is a real problem with a child's eating habits, call in the parents, and if they won't do anything, call in someone else who can liaise with the parent.

What's laughable is that there are schools in inner cities, with multi cultural students, who we wouldn't know what on earth they are eating, and then there are schools where if you told the parent that Freddy couldn't have a chocolate bar, Freddy's dad would turn up and punch your lights out.

As often is the case, these lovely ideas are wonderful in theory, but not in practice.

By the way, I'd love to see all children AND adults eat well, I'd like to see fast foods a thing of the past, and that everyone lived a healthy life, but it ain't gonna happen, I am a realist,. let the schools teach, and look after our children,let the parents feed them.

Silly Sausage

Silly Sausage Report 20 Mar 2013 10:45

** hides mars bar ** me too :-D

I always thought the logic was for the schools to get the parents on board and they are half way there. They did introduce free fruit for infant schools I dont know if this still goes on as well as the free milk.


Sharron Report 20 Mar 2013 10:46

I don't know this but I thought that really poor children had free meals at school.


~Lynda~ Report 20 Mar 2013 10:56

I left this comment out, and maybe explains more what I mean.....

If a child brought in a yogurt, and another child brought in a sausage roll, how would anybody know, what one would be the healthiest i.e the yogurt could be full of sugar, the sausage roll could be home made low fat pastry, with non fattty meat, or for that matter, vegetarian and extremely healthy. Would the school send a note home saying the parent should send in two yogurts next week, and forget the sausage roll, it can't work.

Sharron there are free meals, but not every parent wants there child to have them, just because you haven't got much, a parent may still want there child to have a packed lunch from home. Also, anyone seen school meals lately, they aren't all wonderful, and healthy :-0


TheBlackKnight Report 20 Mar 2013 10:58

The School has the job to educate the children, in doing so the school can also educate the children as to what is the right & wrong foods to eat. The School can't make the children or child choose what food the child put's in his/her mouth. The parent should have a say as to what the child eats, They buy the food at home, pay the dentist bills other health bills, know of any religious beliefs.


Sharron Report 20 Mar 2013 11:05

So,if the school is providing rubbish food themselves then,of course,it is hypocrisy.


supercrutch Report 20 Mar 2013 11:34

I disagree Ron, all religions have healthy food choices so that's no argument for a child eating rubbish.

The NHS will pay for the dental and health bills (that's us). Parents shouldn't find it acceptable to have their children's teeth extracted through rot when they are so young. As regards the rise in obesity we are going to leave a legacy of unhealthy, overweight children, some of whom will be very unhappy through bullying and facing diabetes and an early death.

I would much rather schools intervened and at least tried to educate parents in nutrition and attempt to avoid the social stigma and medical crisis a lot of children are heading for.

If that means sending notes home to say that their child is eating too many calories/fats/salt/sugar/additives then go for it.

I assume schools still have a nurse so he/she should definitely be involved too.


TheBlackKnight Report 20 Mar 2013 12:00

supercrutch I did say, The parent should have a say as to what the child eats, maybe I should have reworded that. What I was meaning to say was that... The parent should have a say as to what the child eats & both the Parents & the School should talk about it. That way both parties know what is to be done in the interest of the child & religious beliefs as we all know certain religions influence a persons diet, I did not mean to infer they encouraged eating rubbish.

(If a religion required eating chocolate, cake, trifle & marshmallows my OH would be a avid supporter of it for life. :-0 )


Nyx Report 20 Mar 2013 12:04

I have to add :-) the primary school that D was at for a while educated the children ( exhaustively) on why broccoli was good for you and chocolate was not...fair enough, BUT then had the total lack of sense as to give the kids ( age 4) a taste test of 'healthy foods' including, without checking or apparently even thinking, about possible allergy ...peanuts!

I think if the school dinners were a healthy option and a better choice then it might help, but in a lot of cases they're not.

I suspect banning unhealthy items will just mean that some children will have very little lunch at all.

Not allowing fizzy drinks and peanuts is sensible, but beyond that I don't think it is workable. A 'healthy' yogurt may be full of sugar...and 'unhealthy' cake may be home made with very little sugar and no additives..... 'spring water with juice' may look healthy but have chemic als in, more dangerous than sugar. ( I think really that taking drinks to school should be banned and only water and milk provided instead)

I will allow I am probably not the person to ask, my experience of school dinners ( no packed lunch allowed) and being forced to eat meat by teachers who were little short of sadists, is not likely to make me unbiased.

Silly Sausage

Silly Sausage Report 20 Mar 2013 12:08

Rose I would of hit the roof if they offered my child a peanut I NEVER had them in the house when they were even teenagers infact if I see them with a pkt of peanuts now I go in to a panic and there 20 23 and 27 :-D