Kindergarten Teachers Cracking Down On Junky Classroom Snacks
|September 5, 2013||Posted by Stacy under Healthy school snacks, Healthy snacks, Junk food in school, School policy, Wellness policy|
Included in my twins’ kindergarten “Welcome” packet was an entire page of guidelines on snacks brought from home:
Ok, do you see what I see? It says, “Absolutely no CANDY!!” I repeat, “Absolutely no CANDY!!” Pinch me, please!
While I don’t agree with everything on the list, I very much appreciate the effort to teach kids (and parents) what kinds of foods are best for their brains and their bodies. And I love the fact that they are discouraging cookies and high sugar and processed snacks of any kind.
According to the back-to-school handout, birthdays will be celebrated once a month as a group (another change from two years ago). That means about eight birthday parties with the requisite double-frosted cupcakes instead of 20 parties–a big reduction.
Since our school doesn’t have a policy about candy and other junk at school, our kindergarten teachers got together and made their own rules. This is a perfect example of teachers being forced to play food cop when a school district has failed to create firm guidelines about classroom food. As much as I hate that they’re being put in this position, I am grateful that we have health-conscious teachers who are willing to be the bad guys to create an optimal learning environment and protect our kids’ health.
The last 18 months of trying to change the food culture at my children’s elementary school hasn’t always felt very productive. More than once, I’ve found myself frustrated (SEE: Rant of the Day: Please Stop Feeding My Kids Junk Food at School!) and demoralized. But guess what?!? The conversation has started. Teachers are talking and sending home healthy snack lists. Slowly but surely, word is spreading and both kids and parents are getting the message. I can’t help but hope that maybe, just maybe, this is the year we’ll see REAL CHANGE with an updated (and MUCH stronger) school district wellness policy and a firm commitment to GETTING HEALTHY.
Then again…one child in my twins’ kindergarten class apparently showed up with a full-size (6-ounce) can of Pringles yesterday. No, I didn’t really think it was going to be THAT easy.
Do you think teachers should establish the food rules for their own classrooms? Or should there be school-wide policies in place so they don’t have to? Tell me what you think!