No Homemade Lunches?! ( a Rant)

United States
April 11, 2011 3:04pm CST
The Food Nazis have succeeded to ban homemade lunches at a Chicago school. Instead of just making the lunches better they are now banning Any lunch made at home. Either a child pays 2.25 for lunch or go hungry! Wow! I know my choice would be to go hungry. When i went to school, I remember just having some cheese and bread. When I got home , then I had a good dinner.I think the Food Nazi who thought of this didn't think it through. If they thought this would get kids to eat better , they are wrong. If they thought This would save the State money , they are wrong! Many parents can't afford 2.25 so they will either send their kids to school hungry or try to applied for free lunches.So not only will kids be tired but Hungry? I think this is a class action suit waiting to happen. Your thoughts.
6 people like this
24 responses
• Canada
11 Apr 11
Here's a link to an article that talks about that particular elementary school: http://news.yahoo.com/s/yblog_thelookout/20110411/us_yblog_thelookout/chicago-school-bans-homemade-lunches-the-latest-in-national-food-fight Apparently, they feel the kids will eat a more nutritious lunch if they provide it, rather than what they bring from home. I think that can go either way. My daughters have always had a lunch prepared by me (even the one who is now in university still takes the lunch I make her). I strive to make sure they always have fresh veggies, fruit, cheese, yogurt, etc., and we limit the junk food. They also don't take sodas. They mainly have water (or, as they are getting older, they do drink coffee sometimes). It says in the article that kids with medical excuses or allergies are allowed to bring a lunch... but no one else is. That's really severe. In our school system, problems arose with parents who didn't want to accommodate the children with allergies - i.e., no peanut butter, no peanut products and all that. They also instituted a program where lunch room monitors checked what the kids were bringing from home and if they brought only junk food, candy, etc., the parents received a letter from the school about it. Telling parents they have to pay $2.25 per child for lunch or the kids go hungry, that's rough. They are calling it "nutritional tough love." I agree that children need to be eating better -- fries, chocolate bars and such are not a lunch, yet that's all many kids eat every day -- but I don't agree that you let a child go hungry. They cannot perform well in school if they are under nourished.
2 people like this
• United States
12 Apr 11
The more I thought about it , the more I feel this is a way to punish the middle class. Think about it, the rich can afford the 2.25. The real poor will qualify for the free lunch program but what about the middle class? So kids are learning that what they bring from home Will be expected? And what if the parents don't read the letter or read it and ignore it? Will their kid be expelled because of the wrong type of lunch? And now kids will be tired and hungry when they take all those tests? Wonderful. So by not letting kids be kids and eat whatever their parents lets them Just may cost the school more! Why? If the kids don't pass those tests ,the school loses their funding.
2 people like this
• Canada
12 Apr 11
I was thinking, too, what about the families that have maybe 3 or 4 kids in the same school? That's up to $45 a week just in lunch costs. Many families simply cannot afford that but, as you said, they won't qualify for financial assistance. We bear the burden of so many costs as it is -- using myself as an example, I know this year I have had to pay hundreds of dollars for a required uniform (public high school), $125 for "student supervision fees" (when my daughter is 17, in her senior year and doesn't even eat lunch in the cafeteria where this "supervision" is supposed to take place), another $100+ for textbooks, workbooks and "study guides" (paying for photocopying, basically) billed by the school, I can't remember off the top of my head what I paid for school supplies, and then the school tax bill rolls in at $260 or so. Being told I am obligated to pay for school lunches on top of that would definitely upset me. You asked: "And what if the parents don't read the letter or read it and ignore it? Will their kid be expelled because of the wrong type of lunch?" I can tell you this happened all the time when my daughter was in elementary school. Parents didn't read the letters sent home. They would still send peanut butter sandwiches, cookies, granola bars and desserts with peanuts, etc. The monitors that checked the lunches would put the items back in the lunch bags and send them back home. If the whole lunch was "wrong", like the PB sandwich, the child would be sent up to buy a lunch and the parents would have to pay that back. I'm honestly not sure if any parents out and out refused to cooperate and, if they did, what happened to the student because of it.
1 person likes this
• United States
12 Apr 11
You mean I could be sent home because of peanut butter? Wow! I would pack it On purpose. then I could get out of class! The same thing with wearing a uniform. If All I had to do was wear the wrong thing and I would be out? Out I would go! In fact , my mom woud take me out of that school.
@JenInTN (27564)
• United States
13 Apr 11
I have been dealing with that here for the last two years. They have taken out the snack and coke machines at the schools here too. My girls are not allowed to have their lunches prepared and sent. The thing is that even the years that this was not enforced, there was hardly any accomodations for children that brought lunches. There were no refidgeration units available for them to use. So nice of the teachers to offer to share theirs..not. They have also banned parties for the children here where candy or pizza might be involved.
2 people like this
• United States
14 Apr 11
So No parties, no food , Only work! When will the sign " Work Will Make You Free" be posted? My mom would either transfer me or... pick me up after school and take me to eat. my last years of highschool started so early that my " lunch" was a t 10:30. So I had a snack of bread and cheese and then I had dinner when I got home.
@SViswan (12071)
• India
13 Apr 11
When I was in school, we had a cafetaria that sold snacks but almost all of us got food from home to have during our break. Sometimes we shared. In the Middle East when I was in school, the day started early and we were always back home for lunch. I heard that timings have changed now. When we moved to India, there was no concept of school lunches and all of us got lunch from home. A few who stayed close to the school, would go home for lunch during the 1 hour break. When my older son started school, the idea of school lunches had just started here (snack for my son because he went to half day kindergarten). It was compulsory to start with but most kids were not used to that kind of food and so they stopped and we would provide healthy home snacks. A few years later,when my older son was in primary school, they made the school snack/lunch compulsory again.....when a few parents complained, they made it optional (the fee for the food was exorbitant). At the time, I was working as a teacher at the school and my sons would get it for free. But since my son and I preferred home made food, the older son didn't opt for the school lunch and I would pack him snacks and lunch everyday...while my younger one would have the school snacks. I think it's crazy to force such ideas on parents....I don't see the point.
2 people like this
• United States
13 Apr 11
It is the government trying to take the place of parents. The Kids in the US are Obese and they want to fix it . But instead of teaching the parents And making healthy food cheaper , they are forcing parents who can;t afford it , pay more for " healthy" lunches. As for lunch at home. Most kids live too far away to go home for lunch . And if they Did go home, there wouldn't be anyone home, if there are two parents , Both are at work. Plus lunch is just 30 minutes ,if that. The Food Nazi that thought this out i bet Didn't think about the time. If All kids are buying their lunches , the lines will be longer and most kids won't even get to eat.
• United States
12 Apr 11
I think it is a shame that parental rights are being taken away. Yes, kids need to eat nutritious meals, but ultimately, parents have a right to make these decisions. If parents send junk food for their kids to eat, I'm sorry, it's none of your business. If you want to educate parents, start a campaign to raise awareness among parents in your community about what is healthy and what is not. Why not make a list of healthy, low cost lunch ideas to distribute to parents? Beyond that, you cannot control how each family chooses to live.
• United States
13 Apr 11
The parents they want to reach will not read the ideas. It is sad. Whoever thought this out must assume that All parents send junk food in school lunches. Wrong! And to force families to pay for lunch when they are trying to pay for rent is stupid. I think there will be a class action suit.
@sunny5u (2072)
• India
12 Apr 11
This is sucking, who are they to order not to bring homemade lunches, what if if the child doesn't like the food they cooked or they have an allergy towards that particular dish, and the child gets tired listening to the classes and all and more over every parent cannot afford 2.25 daily, the child gets weaker day by day, a certain action has to be taken against this.
• United States
12 Apr 11
The article said that if a child has an allergy , they can bring their lunch.I see a class action suit coming from this Real soon.
@bounce58 (17524)
• Canada
16 Apr 11
Is this another money-making scheme?! It's amazing how some authorities try so hard to make everything common and the same, yet they fail to see the reality that all families are not the same. That $2.25 may be a small amount, but for some families is not really affordable specially if it's multiplied daily.
2 people like this
• United States
12 Apr 11
That's crazy. How can they force a family to pay for lunch. I'm a mother of three and can't afford to pay $2.25 per child per day. That's $135 just to pay for my kids school lunch... are they insane. Most family are struggling to pay rent and with this added bill for school lunches families are going to have to cut back by preparing homemade lunches for their kids.
2 people like this
@cher913 (25890)
• Canada
11 Apr 11
are you kidding me? there is no way i would be paying $2.25 every day for luncn. there is no way i could afford this. time to start an email, letter and phone call campaign!
2 people like this
• Canada
11 Apr 11
I agree 100%. This is a disaster waiting to happen. If the kids are forced to sit in the lunch room, then they wont be able to sneak a lunch to school. Whoever dreamed this up must have had money to buy lunch when they were going to school. I know I never had much options in the cafeteria for healthy food for lunch, so more often, I would bring my own from home. These people are stupid and foolish to think like this, I hope they don't get away with it.
2 people like this
@youless (94715)
• Guangzhou, China
12 Apr 11
I just replied to a discussion like yours. Now I see that all the responses are diagreements. Here our schools don't allow children to bring any kinds of food. It is OK that you come back to home for lunch. Or you will stay in the school to have lunch. Usually I will pay about USD100 for the lunch plus other fees to the school every two months. Compare to the kindergarten, I think primary school's charge is very little already. When my son was in the kindergarten, usually every month I had to pay for about USD200. Since my husband and I also have to work, and I don't want my mom to be tired. So I let my child to have lunch in the school. The food is ordinary and it is not very delicious. I can ensure that, because my son often has lots of leftovers (they don't allow to throw away the food) when he is home. The food includes rice, a little meats and vegetables. My son is a little picky and he doesn't like to have some kinds of vegetables. I know he may not enjoy the lunch in school and he may be hungry in the afternoon. But this is because he doesn't finish his food. I don't like to see his leftovers because I tell him that the food is precious and we shouldn't waste it. Every morning I prepare a good breakfast for him and he will finish it at home. So at least the nutrition shall be fine. If other children can finish the school food, I don't want my son to be an exception. He shouldn't be much special than anybody. You know I love my son so much, but I don't give in in this aspect. I don't want him to be spoiled. If he chooses to be hungry, then it is his choice. The school already offers him food. He is already luckier than many children in the world. Some children can't even have a full meal. As to the situation in USA, I am not quite sure. But it will give me a shock if the food is not good there. As to the charges, you can see the charges here. A study is always an expensive cost, even if here it claims that the children's education is free in the primary school, but you have to pay for other charges, too. Perhaps the schools also have their reasons to ban personal lunch. Some children may compete it? Or it will make the children's diet much more picky? Because their parents must prepare for something they like to eat. In a long term, it may not be a good thing. Sometimes I appreciate Japanese because they never spoil the children. Their way makes their children to have a strong determination and spirit. As you know, usually great people are created in the difficult situation. I love China
1 person likes this
• United States
12 Apr 11
So He Is the Staving Child In China. Let me explain. Back in my day American parents would tell their children to eat All their food because there are starving children in China! Well I always would say , then send this to them because I'm not eating this! If every parent had to spend 100.00 ever other month for their child to go to school, about 90% of the children wouldn't be in school. Here in the States school lunches are not nutritious . They are trying to fix it. Most Middle classed kids bring their own lunch. Yes US kids can be picky eaters. I was and I am stubborn too! Here A lot of food gets wasted. If a person is served something they don't like , it gets thrown out! They are doing this because they think it will help kids get better nutrition but what they don't know is the kids will sneak in junk food. Mom and Dad will pay for the lunches but the kids won't eat them. And G-d help them if they make it a rule that if a child is catch with outside food gets thrown out for the day... there will be a mass exit. If back in my day all I had to do is come in school with cookies I could be sent home. I would do it Every Day.
1 person likes this
@youless (94715)
• Guangzhou, China
13 Apr 11
The food was not enough in my parent's age. However, today most Chinese children have enough food and I must say that they are lucky. Nowadays parents are just worried that their children don't eat properly (because there are more choices for the children to eat and therefore the children won't sit down and finish their meal). It is not a joke that some parents act like slaves in order that their children can eat the food. In my opinion, it is ridiculous. If the children are hungry, they will like to eat anything. I remember when I was a child, I didn't like to eat celery. But one day our middle school arranged us to farm in the village for a week. We didn't have much food everyday and the vegetable was only celery. I had no way but accepted to it. Otherwise I would be hungry and I couldn't handle the hard farming work. Then I started to feel that the celery wasn't that bad. After that, I eat celery without problems. My child also didn't like eat vegetables when he was little. And he had a change after he was in the kindergarten.
1 person likes this
• United States
14 Apr 11
When I was a child , no meant never, even when I was a baby. my mom was worried because I wouldn't eat. To this day I work all day and then go home to eat. I don't believe in forcing anyone eat what they don't like because I rather fast than eat something I don't like.
@coffeebreak (17820)
• United States
12 Apr 11
Here's the link.. http://news.yahoo.com/s/yblog_thelookout/20110411/us_yblog_thelookout/chicago-school-bans-homemade-lunches-the-latest-in-national-food-fight Isn't that pathetic? I swear the schools are getting out of control. Thing is..if they do this...does that make them reponsible for the health of the child...so that if the child gets or stays over weight, the parents can sue the school for making their child that way...similar to the way they did McDonald's and the Happy Meal? And if the kids get some other kind of malnutritioned issue..is it the schools fault? Well, it is but they won't accept it and to say "eat this or go hungry"... Sounds like Hitler to me. I'd home school my kid and let that school close for lack of attendance. This is "get healthy" thing is out of control
1 person likes this
• United States
12 Apr 11
That's why I call then Food Nazis. They say Eat this or else. Ask my mom how good that works with me! I would rather fast until dinner than eat something I don't like.
@coffeebreak (17820)
• United States
12 Apr 11
But it isn't even about what the kids like or don't like. The school is saying that ALL parents are incapable of making a decent healthy lunch for their kids so the school has to do it for them. I"m sorry, but that picture on the article...I'd say a ham sandwich is more healthy than that hot dog sitting there! Or a thermos of soup. I send my kids to school for an education, not to be feed as others see fit. I don't see anything wrong with the option of school lunch brown bag lunch, plus these days with the ice paks and thermos'...kids can take a very healthy lunch to school. If they'd put this much attention on the education of kids, kids would be graduating with better GPA's and more qualified to deal with the real world.
1 person likes this
@coffeebreak (17820)
• United States
12 Apr 11
And if this is the way it goes...you know what comes next "kids are so sluggish and slow and tired all the time... must be bad parenting and allowing the kids to stay up half the night"....kids get energy from what they eat. This isn't enough for most to have much energy to keep their eyes open! I am not for a huge lunch or anything like that, but I have seen the hot lunches at my grand daughters school and they are pathetic. Breakfast is a banana, milk and granola! Lunch was tater tots, string cheese and mini burger, plain and milk. What they show and what they have are not healthy lunches. Just skimpy.
1 person likes this
@dawnald (84146)
• Shingle Springs, California
11 Apr 11
oh c'mon, seriously?
1 person likes this
• United States
12 Apr 11
Seriously! They can't force the parents to serve what they say is healthy so the Food Nazis think they can get the kids at lunch!
@hotsummer (10466)
• Philippines
15 Apr 11
yes she is serious!
1 person likes this
@piya84 (2589)
• India
12 Apr 11
this is plain ridiculous!How come all parents can afford to pay that money.
• United States
12 Apr 11
Exactly , not All parents can afford this.
@thesids (22351)
• Bhubaneswar, India
12 Apr 11
Hi behen They seem to have surely turned insane(or at least headed by an insane person at the helm). I mean I always learned that home made food is the best. Medics, Food Lovers everyone says this. And I was beginning to feel that home made food is my birth right kind of thing... but reading this I am completely baffled. Whether one can afford that price for food is another question to play a major role. If I had a kid and s/he was studying there, I would have thought of moving to another school...
• United States
12 Apr 11
If fact I think that's what the rich parents Will do, get their kid transferred. the Middle classed may do the same. That leaves the poor. Poor kids already can apply for free lunches . so this idea will work if they Wanted an all poor student body! I was blessed with a mom , a Stay at home mom , who respected my likes and dislikes. She Knew that I was a picky eater Since birth. So I got a homemade lunch. By the time I was in highschool,lasses started so early my "lunch" was at 10:30! So I had some cheese and bread. When I got home I had a huge dinner. With this rule that's what My child would Have to do, fast until dinner.
@bird123 (10526)
• United States
12 Apr 11
I think you called. This is a class action waiting to happen. Hmmm?? Maybe we can smuggle some luches in when no one is looking. We just can't let those kiddies go hungry. I bet if enough people write, someone will get the message.
1 person likes this
• United States
12 Apr 11
Maybe there should be a lunch-in. Have Every kid bring in a lunch and have them open them up and eat them all at once.The Food Nazis can't stop All the kids all at once.
@blue65packer (11835)
• United States
12 Apr 11
I think this idea is totally stupid! When I went to school I had my own lunch which I took to school. In grade school everyone brought their lunch to school. In high school if you didn't bring a lunch you could buy a meal in the lunchroom,which you paid for. No big deal! Now the Food Nazies are being totally irresponsible! I hope there is more then one class action suit happens out of this! This is a real dumb idea they came ou with!
1 person likes this
@coffeebreak (17820)
• United States
12 Apr 11
We didn't even have school lunches until I hit the 7th grade and that was back east. West coast...we didn't even have a cafeteria! We had lunch tables outside and when it rained...we got to eat at our desks!
1 person likes this
@sender621 (14956)
• United States
12 Apr 11
The school system should see that your child has a lunch at school but i don't think they have the right to dictate where that lunch coes from. I don't see how bringing a lunch from home could be something the school woud want to ban. Theis is their way of forcing you to purchase their lunches when you didn't have to. they are taking choice away from parent and child this way.
@coffeebreak (17820)
• United States
12 Apr 11
And $2.25 for what is pictured in the article? Are you serious? I can do better than that with a homemade lunch for probably cheaper! And if you buy...that's $11 a week...for junk like hot dogs and carrots? I'd like to see them go from noon to 3-4:00 on just that...kids play hard and are moving and growing...they need more than that to sustain them!
1 person likes this
@cream97 (29166)
• United States
11 Apr 11
Hi. sarahruthbeth22. How can they expect parents to pay for their kids lunch meal all of the time? Many parents can't afford to pay for a school lunch. What ever happened to free lunch? This is a shame, it really is!!! How can a child learn and concentrate properly if they don't have anything to eat. If they have changed this law, then that means that they mind as well be paying for their lunch meals. This really pisses me the hell off to know that this is taking place in schools nowadays.
1 person likes this
• United States
12 Apr 11
Poor kids can apply for free lunch , but all others no! So it is the middle classed kids that will go hungry.
• Philippines
11 Apr 11
This is just pain crazy! Why ban lunches which were packed at home with love? Packed lunch were specifically made by parents to ensure that their kids won't go hungry and would be eating healthy. Somehow, it also allows other families to save up. I guess the prohibition is propelled more of the profit to be made from it rather than really caring for healthy eating by the students.
1 person likes this
• United States
12 Apr 11
It is going to cost the school system money. I know there is going to be a class action suit.
• Canada
29 Aug 11
I totally agree with you. Let's crunch some numbers. I'll use my family, as an example. My sister and I = 2. $2.25 x 2 = $4.50 Aprox 20 school days a month = 90 Multiply by 10 months a year = $900!!! Lots of families have more than two children, AND are on low incomes, through no fault of their own. The people at that school are fascists who deserve to be deported somewhere where they can learn what hunger feels like.
1 person likes this