Today, October 13, 2014 is Columbus Day and while most children are enjoying a day off from the demands of education, the topic of school is getting more attention this week than usual. Specifically, the subject of food is front and center as October 13 through October 17, 2014 is designated as National School Lunch Week, a period time to reexamine school lunches and the importance of sound nutrition.
What is National School Lunch Week?
National School Lunch Week is scheduled for October each year, directly following the second Sunday of the month. It is a time for educators, parents, students, and others to take a closer look inside the school cafeteria and examine how the food served at school plays an important role in sound nutrition.
Are School Lunches created Equally?
Nutrition standards for basic school lunches are mandated and have to meet specific standards. But that doesn’t mean the food sold at your local elementary, junior high, or high school includes only these foods. Students are often free to buy other foods that are frequently lower in nutrition, higher in fat and calories, overloaded with artificial ingredients, or a combination of the above. Parents are sometimes surprised to learn exactly what their kids are eating, how it is prepared, etc. National School Lunch Week is intended to bring attention to these important matters.
What Can I Do to Find Out More?
Those who are a parent of a school age child, a grandparent of a young person, or just someone who has an active interest in school food and nutrition are encouraged to take part in National School Lunch Week. Involvement can take on many forms, including:
- Educating yourself on the National School Lunch Program and its requirements/regulations
- Finding out about the foods offered at your child’s school
- Reading about recent government efforts to regulate school lunches and help fight obesity
- Visiting your child’s school cafeteria, joining him/her for lunch, and discovering first- hand what food is served, how much it costs, how it is prepared, etc.
There are many things we can do to improve our school lunch IQ. Stay tuned here at Money Saving Parent as we examine school lunches throughout the week.
Copyright 2014, Bryan Carey