To think it's absolutely ridiculous that parents can't choose their own children's lunch?

(126 Posts)
annabanana84 Thu 26-Sep-13 08:37:30

I've read a few threads on here now where parents have been told they can't put chocolate/fizzy pop/whatever the fuck they want into their childrens lunchboxes. Am I alone in thinking this is absolutely absurd? Why on earth is the school taking away the parents choice? I remember once a week, as a treat, I would be sent with jam butties, a packet of crisps, a kit kat and a panda pop cherryade, and the school didn't bat an eyelid. Why do schools feel they have to do this, I wonder?

Preciousbane Tue 01-Oct-13 11:06:46

When I was at school in the 1970's and very early 1980's there was one very overweight child in the entire school.

I live very close to a site with three schools on, a noticeable proportion of the dc are overweight, some just a little and some a lot.

I get the annoyance with the nanny state interfering. MN will have parents using it that are generally concerned parents whether about food, Sats or evil women on the PTA. We want to be informed and couch opinions. A few people always choose to ignore sage advice and that is why schools have lunchbox policies that are harsh. They are irritating but I do get it.

I know Xbox kind of activities are blamed on dc becoming overweight but I think the rise of car useage is more to blame. I had to walk a four mile round trip to school from the age of nine. My neighbour actually laughed when she realised I choose to walk the 1.5 miles in to our town centre and back unless doing a big shop.

hettienne Tue 01-Oct-13 10:50:49

It's no imposition to not give your child a bar of chocolate for lunch though - it's hardly cutting out a major food group! If you're desperate to give them chocolate/sweets just do it at 3.30pm.

Meh84 Tue 01-Oct-13 10:44:48

DS is at pre-school and they haven't got any rules as to what he's allowed to have in his lunch box. I remember the manager saying to me, 'If you want to give him 10 kitkats, then give him 10 kitkats!'

Not likely! It would seem we're in a place where parents understand how to balance out packed lunches and not give said child a packed of Haribo and a can of pop.

The other day...I gave him a bakewell tart as a treat! grin

Elsiequadrille Tue 01-Oct-13 10:43:26

I can kind of see why guidelines might be needed. Also recently heard of somebody going quite OTT in the 'healthy' direction and providing really quite an insubstantial pack lunch by consequence. I hope that sort of thing would be picked up on too.

geeandfeesmum Tue 01-Oct-13 10:25:33

This is what annoys me. So what if once a week, someone sends a bar of chocolate in their child's packed lunch. I don't think that the school have any right to dictate what we are feeding our children!!

If they want to be involved in these things, they should stick to teaching!! Perhaps, they could teach primary school children how to cook healthy food or even offer parents cooking sessions if they are that bothered.

If there are children that are being obviously underfed or overfed (and it is affecting their health) that is the only time a school should be allowed to comment on what we feed our children!!

hettienne Tue 01-Oct-13 09:27:53

I think some basic rules are fine - DS's school is very sensible and just says no fizzy drinks (some 4 year olds were being sent in with cans of red bull for example) and no sweets/chocolate. I'm sure some parents will still send in crap lunches, but at least it won't be a mars bar and a can of coke.

Schools that go to far and try to set nutritional guidelines they don't understand - no processed carbs, low fat, not cakes or whatever - should be ignored though.

Definitely worth going to see for yourself though. What appears on the menu isn't always what they get. And the "taster sessions" are their best work. You want to see what they actually serve. Also worth finding out if they pick and pre order or if it's pot luck on the day. There's been a few threads about kids living off chips and bread as they run out before the kid gets to the front.

fuzzpig Tue 01-Oct-13 09:22:12

grin caffeine

I'll look on the website - schools round here use an external company that bring in the meals. DD had them before and I remember them being fairly homey type stuff but a bit pasta heavy. DS doesn't eat much cooked veg so we've agreed to add extra cucumber/carrot sticks etc to evening meals.

FreudiansSlipper Tue 01-Oct-13 09:05:52

yabu

would you really want to teach children who have had a lunch of sugar and additives

it has been proven children do better at school when they have eaten a balanced healthy lunch, their concentration of better. not all parents bother to give this to their children

Poo? Ffs pop damn autocorrect

Why don't you check out the menu and ask if you can poo in and see what the meals are like? Easiest way to find out smile

fuzzpig Tue 01-Oct-13 09:01:54

Well I've just found out that thanks to a reduction in my hours (health reasons) my DCs are now entitled to free school meals. Am quite pleased as it will save some money of course and the time/energy (in short supply for me)... but will the dinners be healthy I wonder?

I was pleased that we'd got into a good habit with making healthy lunch boxes and the DCs were eating it all every day - not sure they will eat all of a hot meal especially my 4yo as he can be quite fussy.

I do understand the rules I just don't think that they are consistent enough as like you said the school still serves junk and parents still send in crap just presented differently so it gets through, despite still being junk.

justmyview Sun 29-Sep-13 20:03:57

In principle, I'm in favour of lunchbox rules, but it's hypocritical if school are serving junk

That's where it's all bloody wrong. Can't see how assuming all parents are idiots and unable to feed and de-louse our children properly is less discriminatory than telling the relevant parents. They are more likely to act surely if they know people are on to them than hiding behind the crowds.

Smartiepants79 Sun 29-Sep-13 19:03:51

You can talk to thatparent but it is now considered to be very poor to single out particular families or children for any reason.
Just like I am not allowed to tell a particular parent that their child has head lice. Even though I've seen them in their hair with my own eyes. I have to inform all parents to check for them.
The rules have to be in place and enforced for all children or it is seen as discrimination.

littlestgirlguide Sat 28-Sep-13 22:26:12

I do think that sometimes people lose the concept of balance in diet.
Most foods are not bad in moderation, as part of a balance diet. The odd chocolate bar, sausage roll or chocolate cookie will not kill you or make you fat as long as it is eaten as a part of diet rich in all the other necessary components. The occasional smoothie or can of coke will not, on it's own, make your teeth rotten.
Balance and moderation are key.

ubik Sat 28-Sep-13 10:37:19

I think fruit smoothies have more sugar than coca cola and the acid will rot teeth.

We don't have juice fresh or diluting, at home or school, nor do we have fizzy drinks unless at party/ on holiday.

Nanny0gg Sat 28-Sep-13 10:24:31

I've seen a lunch box that has just had a McDonald's happy meal stuffed into it! Don't tell me that parent doesn't need some rules about acceptables lunches for year olds.

So talk to that parent!

But the sweeteners in flavoured waters and kids drinks aren't good either. I'm not saying that fizzy drinks shouldn't be banned don't get me wrong, but surely people can see the flaws within the requests and how it very often doesn't make sense. It's been raised on here many a time that schools insist on fruit at break for example yet it's probably worse for them due to sugar spikes than slow release carbs fat and protein which they are not permitted to have as it has to be fruit. I'm just saying If things are going on to banned lists then the suggested alternatives need to be significantly "better" than what they are banning.

MadeOfStarDust Fri 27-Sep-13 14:07:29

coke can be harmful to health... caffeine and phosphoric acid both prevent absorption of calcium, causing bone weakness. Because caffeine causes more calcium than usual to be excreted through urine it can contribute to kidney stones too....

Carbonic acid - the stuff that makes your tongue tingle in a fizzy drink - the acid made from the CO2 - is a major cause of dental enamel erosion in the Western world.

Sugar is not the only bad element of a fizzy drink - hence they are banned by most primary schools.

And of course the fact that in separate components things don't get through, eg a pot of natural yogurt and a small serving of plain choc chips to mix in. But a dairy milk chocolate yogurt with the side portion of choc is allowed because nothing dictates what flavor yogurts are allowed.

For example yes a can of coke is sugary shit but there's more sugar in a fruit shoot in than in the equivalent amount of coke. That's the point about it needing to make sense. There is often more sugar in kids drinks than there is in fizzy yet only fizzy is banned.

Of course done guidelines are needed, but schools should be under no illusion that they see r making any difference in that sense. Unless you start dictating exactly what each day should contain, a bag of harribo will really be the least of their worries after all they are merely transferring the time of day that the kid gets them. Could just as easily be eating them on the way to school. And whereas I have no problem with not including sweets and fizzy drink as those are a very rare treat for my dc, I do have a problem with having to wade through a load of "suggestions" which are no bloody better than what they banned, and for my child to sit and watch the massive cookies and muffins the school meal children get whilst hoping no one says anything about the home made fruit and seed flap jack along side the fruit and veg in dds lunch bag.

GangstersLoveToDance Fri 27-Sep-13 11:59:45

However caffeine, that sort of lunch is still preferable to a cheese stick, crisps, haribo and cola...so some guidelines (such as no fizzy drinks) are sensible.

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