Nutrient-based standards for school meals in England's secondary schools become law in September. It will bring a close to the journey kicked off by one Jamie Oliver in 2005. But school caterers are very worried that falling meal uptake will plummet further as the kids reject the "healthy" school meals and head to the chip shop instead. Shut up and get on with it? Or is there a better, simpler way to improve children's diets?
I heard a pub chef on the radio this morning, who said he's serving hundreds of full English breakfasts to (presumably college) stduents each month. As for younger students, is locking the school gates until 3pm an option?
If I understand this correctly, will schools be ofering less choice. ie a prescribed two-course lunch? In the Information Age, when Google etc have truly made the customer king, isn't this a step backwards?
The school caterers at the summit yesterday in London said that the only way to make sure the food served has the 14 micro-nutirents set out in the guidlines - such as iron - is two serve a fixed two-course lunch. So, yes in a sense there will be less choice.
Younger students (primary) don't seem to be the concern as they will eat what they are given by and large and aren't allowed to wander about at lunch time. Certainly a stay on site policy is vital at secondary but, for various reasons, remains voluntary. So unless your school supports the caterers with this it's tough and the local shops and burger bars are doing rather well.
I wonder if it would help to link up with home economics lessions (if this is the correct term, it was called Food Technology in my school days but everyone still called it 'home ec') so kids can eat food they make? Part of the problem must be that some of them are simply not that familiar with healthy / varied food. Maybe having a hand in food-preparation / recipe ideas would help.
Very true. The Government has at least acknowledged this in part with plans to reintroduce cookery lessons.http://www.caterersearch.com/Articles/2008/09/12/323395/government-to-give-schools-150m-to-reintroduce-cookery-classes.html
It's a reasonable argument that is you educate children they will make the right choice more often than not (of course we all like the occasional chocolate bar). I can remember learning to make scones in Home economics at school. I was very proud but when I decided to make them at home I left the sugar out! Healthy I guess but not so good to eat without a lot of jam.