I’m still pissed PART III

The thing that pisses me off the most about about the food problem in America is the schools. And no I am not talking about School lunch. Not yet at least. Let me describe my experiences with my son.

They give the kids candy. A lot of candy. For every conceivable reason. Every birthday in the class is an excuse for the kid to bring “treats” and hand them out. The “treats” are always candy. Obviously every holiday is an excuse for some sort of party. And these parties always include candy. They reward the kids for various things. Reading a certain number of books. No one being tardy or late coming in from recess. And these rewards are often candy. They get candy on the first day of school. Candy on the last day of school. Candy at the book fair. At the very least one day a week, often more, there is an excuse for the handing out of candy. Often not just one little treat, but enough that they bring that crap home.

And this pisses me off. Because how is a parent supposed to combat that? Do I tell the teacher that when all the other kids in class get these treats, my child is not allowed? Yeah right, have my kid be the lone kid who doesnt get to participate. Anyone who remembers how it feels to be a kid trying to fit in knows this isn’t a good solution.

Now let’s talk about the school lunches, because those piss me off too. When I was in grade school my mother usually packed my lunch, it was pretty common then. And when I ate the school lunch, there were no choices. I got a square cafeteria style tray and the lunch ladies filled the little squares in it up with what was for lunch that day. Now I am not saying it was the greatest food, but there was normally some vegetables, some fruit, and some main course that had some meat in it. Potatoes were common. I remember turkey and potatoes with gravy. I remember carrots and green beans as vegetables being common.

But that’s not how it was by the time I got to high school, and its not how it is today. When I was in high school, it was common to see a person pick up a couple of popsickles and a pizza from the cafeteria, and wash it down with a coke from the vending machine. Today, at least in my sons school, NO ONE brings their own sack lunch. And when eating at school, they give these kids CHOICES. Imagine that, letting a kid in grade school choose for himself what he wants to eat! I have been in that lunch room before, and I am estimating half the kids were eating a lunch consisting of either chocolate milk or a sugary “sports drink” and pizza. Pizza with a big fluffy crust, a bit of cheese and some sort of pepperoni looking bits of stuff on top. Dripping grease. Absolute shit.

And that really pisses me off. What in the hell do you think is gonna happen when you tell a bunch of kids here, eat what you want. And by the way, the choices include sugary drinks and greasy assed pizza?

Well what you get is a bunch of kids who between 8am and 3pm are ingesting candy in the classroom for any reason that can be conceived, and eating sugar and grease for lunch.

Now there are gonna be some teachers who read this and say “thats not how it is at my school”. Fine. I am sure this is not representative of every school. But it shouldnt be representative of ANY school ANYWHERE.

This really pisses me off because if you don’t home school or send the kids to a private school, and lets face it these things are not an option for most people, you have to send your kids to spend their day at school 9 months of the year. And how are you supposed to start them out in life with good habits when you are being worked against in this way?

It’s shameful.

And it pisses me off.

Tomorrow I’ll stop being pissed off and talk about solutions.


60 responses to “I’m still pissed PART III

  • ambergravitt

    Yes! Been looking forward to part 3. First, is that supposed to be “salad” in that little cup? Second, it’s kind of hilariously sad, but your description of the special occasion/treat situation at school sounds EXACTLY like the special occasion/treat situation in offices across America, where depressed grownups smother their misery with birthday cake after birthday cake. Thanks for more excellent observations.

  • J.T.

    Coach Pendlay, I am really happy to see you writing about this issue. We’re screwed before we even start… following what experts purport to be a “healthy” diet, replete with 6-10 servings of grains a day, does not really set anyone up for success.

    As a guy who used to weigh 450 pounds and has lost over 200 pounds over the last two years, I have an inkling of what your solutions might be and I look forward to reading your next post.

  • Daniel Boland

    I have only my own solution to offer.Start tonight and make yourself a big dinner. Wake up tomorrow and make yourself breakfast and pack what is leftover from last nights dinner and eat it for lunch. When you head home after work go to the supermarket . Start down the produce aisle and buy only what you’ll eat in the next 4 days. Go to the meat section and buy large, chuck roast, about 5 pounds. Buy chicken breasts with the ribs still on.remove them later and use for making stock. Buy anything else you like and know you’ll eat.Buy enough to last 4 days. Buy eggs,organic, or buy from local person who sells eggs from chickens who are able to forage for themselves.Believe me ,you’ll taste and see the differance.Don’t forget milk and butter and olive oil. Get some cook books that also explain nutrition “Nourishing traditions” by Sally Fallon,New Trends Publishing,inc.(877)707-1776 is the best all around cook book that I’ve come across in 20 years. Not only gives great recipes but teaches the dynamics of nutrition and explains why people were healthier in so many ways, years ago. When you have the pot roast cooked call me. Call me, call me anything, but don’t call me late for dinner!

  • Balanced Bites (@balancedbites)

    Thanks for posting these. It apparently pisses this girl off, too… http://whatsforschoollunch.blogspot.com/
    and this teacher… http://fedupwithlunch.com/

    And, to add to the pissed-offness…

    I get pissed off when Self Magazine tries to tell women what’s healthy to eat: http://balancedbites.com/2010/09/breakfast-scmreakfast-my-take-on-self-magazines-list-of-best-breakfast-choices.html
    Or when Dr. Oz tries to tell the entire country: http://balancedbites.com/2011/09/dr-oz-time-magazine-nutrition-advice.html

    Keep writing and getting the information HEARD!

  • Daniel Boland

    I forgot to mention that” Seinfeld” had a show about Elaine”s problem at work where they were always having parties with cake.As usual it was classic “Seinfeld”.

  • camc1105

    I have been poisoned by the way my society eats! I am trying with all my might and strength to eat better and be healthier. Thank you for your posts. Everything I read about the problems America has with eating is more fuel for me to use, to eating better and being happier because I am eating healthier.

  • taraeaton

    Yay! Part III! Agree: school lunches are atrocious. And wasn’t our dear Congress debating the legitimacy of “tomato sauce” as a vegetable in regards to the healthfulness of school lunches? There were some congresspeople truly fighting to categorize “tomato sauce” as a vegetable. Or did it pass? I can’t remember exactly. In any case: a reason to join Glenn and be pissed!

    • wichitafallsweightlifting

      The more people who are pissed, the better!

    • Mary Walton

      Actually, in watching the HBO Documentary “The Weight of the Nation”, I find that tomato paste is actually classified as a vegetable, which makes pizza a vegetable…this was actually put back in by Congress. Congress has no interest whatsoever in making school lunches healthier at the expense of PAC-laden agribusinesses. It’s unfortunate. My daughter has eaten school “lunch” probably ten times in her 6-year public education and simply refuses, saying “it’s disgusting and gross”. Hear hear – so glad to hear!

  • Marc

    That pizza looks good.

  • Leah

    I actually laughed at how school lunches used to be. I hated school lunches in elementary and my mom flat out refused to make me a lunch to take, so I was forced to eat it five days a week.

    We are slowly making changes in our house, but we are making them. My next big step is *fresh* fruits and veggies. We do a lot of frozen now because we don’t eat fresh fast enough so they go bad. And we hate hate hate wasting money in our house. We’re probably at about 70% of being totally off processed foods, but we are very happy that we got to this point in just a few months. Yes, I have to make sacrifices to make sure we don’t eat anything from a box, but for us it’s worth it. We’d rather do it now then when or if (stupid ass infertility) we have children

  • Sindre Rikheim (@rikheim)

    It’s interesting, and educational, as a Norwegian, to read both your blog entries, Glenn, and all of your reader’s comments. And my interest will be fully charged for your posting on solutions. Which, surely, must be the most challenging part of it all, but probably also the most rewarding.
    The more I study the topics of health and food, as a regular Norwegian sitizen, the more it fascinates me. And makes me worried from time to time.

    Myself, I am 35, live in Oslo with my wife, we don’t have kids yet, we can both get to work without a car, we don’t have a car, and I usually bike 30 kilometers each day to and from work. We are able to be home from work by 5pm at the latest and make our dinner from scratch. I make my wife lunch every day, something I’ve brought with me from my own childhood. Those elements alone gives our health a nice advantage.

    Many Norwegians often tell each other that comparing the Norwegian and the American societies is difficult and often renders little value, as our origins, demography, political structure etc. are relatively different. However, when it comes to health, especially among the younger generation, many of the graphs on the American and Norwegian health charts are starting to meet. And that is NOT a good sign, unfortunately.
    I wouldn’t quite know where to begin to describe the differences of our two countries: hardly any school serves lunch, kids bring their own foodpacks to school in elementary school and also junior high and high school. Our politicians are not as closely connected to the food and agricultural industry as yours are, and our surroundings give more room aland options for walking and biking instead of driving.

    Nevertheless, we are all human. And although many families manage to keep a relatively strict food regime, more and more Norwegians are falling in the category of obesity. That puts a strong pressure on both the health system and individual families, as mentioned in many comments on this blog.
    Without saying too much about possible solutions, in my book it all boils down to 2 choices: food/nutrition and excercise. In any solution, one should therefore take a closer look at WHY people make the “wrong” choices. And then work from there.

    And who should “work from there”? Well, neither in the US or here in Norway the government is taking the charge we would have liked them to. So what to do…I think the way to move forward might be somewhat different in the US than here in Norway, but a combination of national commitment and local enthusiasm could perhaps work.

    Ok, I will stop for now and keep following this blog. So far it’s a constructive “pissed-ness” in all of this. 🙂

    • Mary Walton

      Interesting to hear your viewpoint — among other things, I particularly keyed to, “…Our politicians are not as closely connected to the food and agricultural industry as yours are…” – and therein lies a huge part of our problem as the government regulates school lunches, prison food, etc. – and they really don’t have any interest, collectively (some do, but not enough to make a difference), in our health in general.

  • alessandro ciapanna

    looking forward to reading about your solutions – it’s probably not a good idea to stay too pissed off for too long 🙂

  • ErzulieRedEyesArtandSpirit

    I remember when I was In school we used to get a french-bread pizza, chocolate milk and a fruit cup with some carrot and celery sticks on the side.

  • Khan

    Over here in Australia, the situation isn’t as bad, but it’s definitely heading that way.
    I remember back in high school a salad & tuna roll was $5.00, but a fried chicken roll was $2.00.
    Naturally everyone went for the chicken fried stuff.. It was revolting, It forced me to bring food from home, a habit I
    still continue after 6 years. Besides with training oly lifting 6 days week, I am never full with stuff I eat outside 😀 Unfortunately I was one of few that was disgusted, many of my friends still have fast food more than few times every week. Can’t wait for the solutions.

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  • SammyDee

    I’m told a British Celebrity Chef, Jamie Oliver, visited schools in America and cried because the canteen food was so awful. I didn’t watch the show but if it’s true it makes you want to shake the Head Master and demand “How can you do this to our kids?!”

    I live in England so I can’t comment on American schools; or indeed British schools nowadays. When I was at junior school (grade school?) we were given a variety of foods to choose from. No matter what combination we picked we ended up with a nutritional healthy diet. Plus every child was given a carton of milk, a cup of water and a piece of fruit.

    We took in candy for birthdays e.g. a one penny sweet per person, plus teachers rewarded us with candy – literally one piece from a bag of candy at the end of the day, that was it.

    At high school we were also given a choice from the canteen, only here most of the items were full of fat. I still remember what I ate Every Single Day for 2 years: A jumbo sausage roll, fries with gravy, a packet of Worcestershire Sauce flavour chips, a double-chocolate-chip cookie the size of an adults hand and a large full fat coke.

    One day I told my mum I didn’t want school dinners any more and asked if she would make me pack lunches. From then on I was one of only about five kids in the school who brought their own food. I dropped a stone in a matter of weeks.

    I still love all those bad things, it just doesn’t occur to me to eat them when there are tastier healthier options available.

    • mamamoonbirth

      Seriously, Jamie Oliver is a hero in my eyes. The conversations he is starting in schools and the changes he has already been able to implement are genius. Here’s his page: http://www.jamieoliver.com/school-dinners/

      • ForkYes!

        That Jamie Oliver show is called Food Revolution, and it was filmed in Huntington, WV, less than a couple of hours from my current home. A friend of mine was a cinematographer on it and she had me come meet him while I was in town. Super genuine guy with one of the most worthy causes on the planet.

        Also, I spent a couple of recent summers and falls in Copenhagen, Denmark. My boyfriend was the vice-principal of a grade school so I was able to hear a lot about the inner workings of their educational system. One of the things that most stood out to me was that NO sugar is allowed in school, no candy, no cupcakes on birthdays, none of that. They would bend occasionally and let a class walk to a student’s apartment to have a birthday party with cake, but otherwise no way. Also, they were extremely particular in even how much salt was allowed in cafeteria food. This school was over half immigrants, had many autistic students, and had students from kindergarten to our 12th grade equivalent.

        I’d love to see something like this implemented in our schools, but this will never happen while corporate fast food restaurants bribe their way into schools (i.e. we’ll subsidize your textbook purchases if you let us set up shop in your high school canteen). The greed of corporations is to blame for our failing health here, and now the disease is spread the world around. We cannot fault people who don’t know how to justify food that costs much more when they have to assume that if it’s being served at restaurants or is on grocery store shelves that it’s safe to feed themselves and their kids.

        I played sports throughout school, or the lunch I had everyday of a Mountain Dew and a honey bun might have hurt me a lot more than it did. I’m now gluten-free, and free of the bad headaches and brain fog that plagued me every day in high school in college. After realizing what a dramatic difference small changes made in how I felt I went to school to get my health coaching certification so I could spread the word. Once again, I’m psyched that a message like this made it to the FP page and has provoked such a response. Now that people are paying attention, run with it!

  • wupperwasser

    Maybe this organisation is an inspiration for you? http://foodwatch.de/english/index_ger.html
    Just do it. 😉

  • amoonfull

    this pisses me off as well! What pisses me off the most are the conniving corporations who market and package their foods with “greener and healthier” versions of the previous products, the ones people complained about. (the only things that change are the packaging). Some months ago I read an article in the newspaper talking about The government not going to do a damn thing about public school lunches anymore, even after the Obama administration, mostly because of Mrs Obama, was going to try and change things around. The corporation who produce those shitty pizzas lobbied their way in order to stay the predominant supplier for these schools, saying the ‘tomato sauce’ in the pizza equaled to a serving of vegetable. (the effing nerve). after reading that article, I read another one that spoke about what is becoming an epidemic… more and more doctors are recommending for our children, 10 and up, to start checking their cholesterol. WOW! Do we not see the correlation between one problem and the next? I can wait for your next posts about solutions.
    There is a new documentary (3 or 4 part series) on HBO called “Weight of the Nation”. While it provides plenty of information for the average american who is oblivious of how and/or why the american diet is failing us, it offers no solutions to these problems. Not to mention, many of the sponsors are these same entities that are killing us through their products. we need solutions, not just one, but many. i won’t lose faith
    Great three posts, btw.

  • Sabine Weijers (@sabineweijers)

    Thank God most schools in The Netherlands don’t even have a cafetaria, kids still bring their lunches. Jamie Oliver has taken a great initiative in the UK, could be something for you guys as well: http://www.jamieoliver.com/school-dinners

  • MikEpp

    Totally agree with the post….not only are the foods hurting the body, but think about the effect on the mind. It’s not a secret anymore that America’s schools are on the decline in comparison to other nations(I think were about 25th in the world). You fuel kids with sugar and then expect them to concentrate? Pshh.

  • holbee

    Perhaps there’s some hope (at least in the Hills). My family and I live in Fairmont, WV, where my eldest attends Whitehall Elementary school. The School Boord has FORBIDDEN sugary snacks, treats, and handouts of all types for whatever reason. There is a steep fine for each cupcake, pixie stick, or can of soda brought into the school. Furthermore, all snacks (and meals) must abide by the serving size on the package. Want to bring in some veggies for the kids? Great! They must be prepackaged in individual servings and each kid may have 1 serving.
    Each school lunch also comes with a salad and fruit bar (basic stuff, but it’s still there) and the dressings are pre-packaged servings and, more or less, the healthier choices.
    Maybe there’s hope…

  • cathy gibbs

    Love it! !!!!!

  • sthowell

    Rock on. People need to hear this shouted from the rooftops.

  • cigarwarehouseblog

    On the local news channel last night, one of the main topics was How Sugar Affects Your Brain! Its blocking our brain from retaining and regurgitating useful, important information, prohibiting us from critical thinking skills and learned behaviors. My father and stepmother have a 9 year old boy who is drastically different when his sugar intake is higher than normal. He’s a good kid, his sugar is limited on a regular basis, but when he has too many sugary snacks, he’s destructive. Almost like a drunkard, unaware of his behavior being inappropriate.

  • Lindsey

    I don’t have kids yet, but this not only pisses me off – it scares the crap out of me! I could do everything right, pack a lunch, teach about good choices, give them water to drink, not use food as a reward and have that undone out of my control at school and other social events! Often people blame the parent of a child who is over-weight, but once they go to school and they are made fun of for making healthy choices and then eat the candy or pizza or soda to fit in, whose fault is that? We face that as adults too, at the company lunch meeting, or a friend’s birthday party and we’re lucky that as mature, intelligent adults we know better than to give in…or do we? 64% of the US population is overweight. Now imagine being 5 and having to resist temptations that even most adults can’t. Honestly, I’m considering telling my (future) kids that they are allergic to sugar and pizza and fast-food and soda just so they will have a “socially acceptable” reason to be healthy.

  • mammapuff

    Thanks for your rant! It is needed! I’m looking forward to the solutions. For us, the solution was to complain, complain, complain. The more people that complain, the better their chances for being heard. Our school district as a whole still has room for improvement but on the elementary level, changes have come slowly but surely. Birthdays are no longer celebrated at school with cupcakes or goody bag pass out and vegan/vegetarian/fresh choices are available in the cafeteria. If we want healthy, pro-active children who care about what they put in their bodies, we have to be healthy, pro-active parents who care about what ALL children put in their bodies. It isn’t enough to say “I’m just not going to let them eat in the cafeteria”. We have to speak up. Thanks for speaking up!

  • bestrongbbc

    I’m Tracking with you Glen. I can’t wait for President Pendlay’s solutions. I have some ideas of my own too. I work at a school and you nailed it. We spend government dollars to educate kids about drugs and sex, and government money to protect them from killers and terrorists. Heart disease kills more Americans than tobacco, alcohol, weed, murder and terrorist attacks. Literally hundreds of billions of dollars are spent to educate and protect from these harms, while government actually subsidizes the crap we feed kids and little is done to educate them about better choices. This may be a little to far but think about this. You would NEVER see a cigarette commercial on Saturday morning cartoons. That would be criminal! But the poison that is pop tarts and hot pockets are ok? They kill just as many people as cigarettes.

  • Sharlea

    Keep pissing. Maybe, if we all get pissed together, the wind will blow the other direction and someone will pay attention to nutrition for a change!

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  • Chris Murray

    in west virginia this is not allowed to happen in the school systems. strict rules, as most of you know west virginia is ranked terribly for obesity and wva is fighting it.

  • Leon Okes

    As has already been noted, West Virginia public schools are adhering to strict guidelines forbidding the giving of candy or other sugar laden foods to kids. This includes so called holiday parties as well as for rewards. I would expect that this will become nationwide soon with the hands of USDA clenched around school lunch programs. Students who do not want to eat the school lunch, or whose parents want to play a greater part in the choices, are still permitted to pack their lunches and may buy milk from the school. Flavored milk is offered, but it is neither high in sugar nor milkfat. I cannot fault the nutritional value of our schools’ lunches. Sorry about your situation. I guess it’s time to pack it in.

  • Margarita

    In my experience, the solution happens one parent, one family, one meal, one commitment at a time. I made lunch for my daughter to take to her NYC public schools from kindergarten through HS graduation. Whether or not it changed the system while she was in it is moot: it taught her about having alternatives and making choices that flew in the face of what was considered acceptable. Thank you for speaking out. Continue being courageous…it helps us all!

  • mimibimi

    Amen! I always packed my kid’s lunches. They refused to buy that crap. My son would NOT eat breat. So what did I pack? Sliced cucumber, carrots, grapes, and ounce or so of real cheese. Yes, he did get one soda a day. I cooked dinner almost every night that consisted of all food groups. We ate at a family dinner table with no tv during this family time. I would not go back and do it different for anything in the world. BTW, I worked 50 hours a week. It was worth getting up a little early for every day.

  • questeninghram

    So true! I am 14 and I do occasionally go out and buy pizza and soda with my friends, but i always have an apple, sandwich, carrots, and granola (all organic) in my lunch. I’m just about the only male kid that packs his own lunch and cares somewhat for being healthy.

  • jessica

    Wow!!!! AMEN!!!!!! to all three parts. Can’t wait to here the solutions!!!!!

  • annarakel

    I just love you. I love that you write this. I have been living in the US, NY for 5 years and this pisses me off to!! School for example is a place to educate our kids, in math, writing and other life important subjects, why not take the opportunity to educate our kids about how to eat. Serve good nutritious food that are made in a real kitchen? It is well known how our brain works now a days. It works best if we feed good nutritious food, if we take a break every hour and go outside! In my kids school they go outside for 15 minutes. If they are lucky. And just if it´s not to warm, not to wet, not going to be wet or if they….i don´t know what. I am originally from Sweden and have never heard of snowdays until we moved here. Kids are out three times a day during school days. Candy are banned in classrooms and you eat real food i school.
    This really pisses me of to!!!! Love you for writing about it!!

  • Southern Jane

    So true – I wrote my own post today and linked to your first “I’m Pissed” post. Later in mine I talked about my son’s lunch and how one day he told me the main section of his lunch was cheese sticks. They don’t get to choose what to eat either – it’s set and that’s what you get. They allow two parties a year and don’t allow any colored drinks – like Gatorade, Poweraid, Cokes etc. They have had popcorn parties for the whole class not missing a day of school in a semester and they also aren’t allowed carbonated drinks. I have never seen a vending machine in his school either. So part of me likes what the school is doing and part of me doesn’t because I don’t see how cheese sticks can be good for a kid for lunch when the other things on their plate are just fruit and milk. I totally agree with everything you say 100%. So glad you are on the “front page” today. Way to go!

  • badgarden

    Five years ago our school district decided to do something about the junk being sold in schools. They removed all vending machines from the High Schools & Middle Schools, banned bake sales and banned all homemade treats for all classroom parties. The cafeterias have one microwave oven for all the students to share. There was an incident at one Elementary school where a 7 y/o burned his hand removing his food from the microwave, so they banned microwaves at that school. My Elem. son was bringing leftovers. I then had to invest in thermos type products that hold very little food and are circular in fashion.

    There are still no vending machines in the 2 middle schools in our district! That is a good thing. However, the meals are “cooked” at one location and then trucked to all 7 Elementary schools, 2 High schools and 1 Middle School and reheated. The other MS has the main kitchen there. School breakfasts at the E’s consist of either sugar laden cereals and a cookie or yesterday’s lunch leftovers.

    The High Schools retaliated. They get kick backs from Pepsi-Co that help fund the sports programs. How is the ASB going to function if they cannot sell *smack* at lunch time? Sports & Band Boosters need to raise money. How can they if they cannot sell their candy bars? So, the vending machines returned but in only strategic locations and filled with -LOVE this- Whole wheat poptarts and SoBe “health” drinks!! Yeah! ASB’s have turned to selling “real fruit” smoothies only made from real fruit syrup.

    The teachers are not allowed to hand out candy, but at the Elementary schools, they have snack periods because it is such a long time between breakfast and lunch (The 4th graders are the last to eat at 12:30. School starts at 9). Parents are asked to bring in crackers or fruit gummy snacks. Pretzels, graham crackers & wheat thins fill the teacher’s cupboards.

    I mentioned that they disbanded the Betty Crocker Brigade. At any classroom party, all foods must be made from a commercial kitchen and preferably individually wrapped. They were afraid that a child would either eat something that has an allergic ingredient or get food poisoning.

    So, yeah Glenn, I’m pissed off right with you!

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  • Jonnaliz

    I had to laugh a little at the reference to kids often getting candy at school, because I just thought about how that’s how it is for being a grown up in an office. We find every reason possible to have potlucks, bring in sweets, and go out to have lunch. And what’s horrible is that for such a sedentary job, we eat far too many calories. I gained A LOT of weight the first two years I started working, because I was so surprised that food was just always available. Even better, when I worked in food service, there was nothing like that, and I was constantly on my feet all day working… and lost about forty pounds.

  • Flav_Holman

    You are so right! I’ve read your part 1 and 3, gotta read part 2. We’ve just moved to the US from England and the food at school was pretty good, considering. There were no choices and it was proper food, that they ate with a fork and a knife. Yes, the candy thing was common as well and it also pissed me off, but I knew that at home she wasn’t eating that crap. Luckily she has asked me to pack her lunch for when she starts school in August. I will gladly do that. When she sees that no kids bring lunch from home she might change her mind, but I will cross that bridge when it comes.
    Thanks for sharing your posts!

  • chaiichi05

    😀 I really love your “PISSED OFF” blogs. Too bad there’s no part three.

  • foinaven

    Good blog, Glenn. From reading the various responses, as well as your blog, it appears that nutrition and exercise are key. Here in the UK, I see unhealthy food everywhere, though the pressures of modern life do mean that lots of people go for the easier option. Giving people affordable alternatives and good nutritional education would be a start to breaking the cycle of junk food, I think. Thinking back to when I was at school, far more people had packed lunches, but even then, the fizzy drink vending machines were just beginning to creep in.

    Anyway, plenty of food for thought. I think you’re right to be pissed off, as long as all of this pissed-off energy is put to good constructive use!

  • sarsm


    In Germany some things are better and some are EVEN worse. Not only are they given sweets in school/Kindergarten they are also given them in shops you visit and get this, even at the doctors.

    I have four kids spread over three different schools/kindergarten due to the age difference. My sons school is quite good in this respect. They have two water diispensers at school, one with fizzy and one with tap water. On Fridays they have ‘healthy snack day’ where parents sell ‘healthy’ homemade snacks to the kids (except they’re not always healthy). But the kids can leave the premises at breaks and go to the shop round the corner buying sugary drinks and snacks.

    My daughters school gives sugary drinks out with school lunches but I think, in general the lunches do tend to be healthy.

    My other daughters Kindergarten gives out sweets for tidying up and other such tasks. But they improved the birthday thing by not allowing parents to take part. They have a cook book and the kids can choose a recipe and then cook that with the teacher on their special day. There’s one for cake and one for pizza but the others are for pasta dishes and the like.

    You’re not allowed to put sweets or crisps in snack boxes, you would be considered a really, really bad mother. But I noticed when I had to help out one day, that several kids brought pastries and bread with sweet toppings instead.

    At the primary school teachers have been known to take sugary drinks and snacks away from children and berate them but then some of those same teachers head across the street and buy themselves a cake EVERY day and eat it in front of the kids. One teacher used to even send one of her pupils.

    My five year old has a big problem with sugar. She really reacts with it and we spend a lot of time discussing what she’s actually eating (because like you, it’s often not in my control).

    Some of the parents astound me. When I first came here they baked little cakes for each childs birthday and handed each pupil in the class one. But over the years it’s a dapted and now most of then hand in a plastic bag filled to the brim with sweets on birthdays. They’ve been munching on them in school and then on the 2km walk home and once they arrive the bag still has enough in it to be shared out amply amongst the family. IT IS INSANE!!!

    I think when my littlest starts school, I may start a riot.

    Thank you for inspiring me. 😉

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  • TG

    This is so true!! I’m sick of my kids coming home and telling me that they did something right and got a candy bar or coke, or someone brought doughnuts for a snack. MY KIDS AREN’T DOGS and SHOULDN’T BE REWARDED WITH FOOD!!! Give them a homework pass ro something! And all 3 of my kids have taken a packed lunch every single day for years. The first time I saw a cherry popover as LUNCH I blew my lid. No way!!

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  • ryan lopez

    Curtis Stone has a lot of great information about school lunches and his dreams of changing them. He also has programs that teach young people how to cook on there own and effectively buy groceries.

  • John Arnold

    A number of years ago my wife was asked to go speak to our kids grade school dietician by a board member about how they should or could improve the lunches. She suggested more meat, veggies and fruits. The problem she told my wife was that if they did not follow the “States” guideline they would lose their state funding for the meal program. So that food pyramid that Michelle OBama has modified is what they have to go by. It is not a suggestion graph of how to eat it is the mandated food program they make our kids eat. They are IMO causing diseased to fuel the FDA’s plan to make you sick so the big pharma, insurance and hospitals machine makes tons of money. It is a scam and they do not care. Where does Michelle OBama have the expertise to dictate what we eat? She is told by very smart people who want to manipulate us to use us to make money and that is all. Do you really think she eats healthy? Have you seen you big ass? Another side note..
    If you population is weak, sick and therefore passive you have better control of them. They are at the mercy of your army’s. Think about! I am more than pissed!

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  • bashshinycap44

    Being a student in Mississippi, my school is mixed between both. However, not only how healthy it is is a problem, quality is also poor at times. (i.e. bugs in food-YUCK! :P)

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    Each participant observed advantages throughout the assessment.

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