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Healthy school lunches

Today, students can bring their lunch from home to school, or, for a small fee, they can buy their lunch at the school cafeteria. At the elementary school level, the kids are offered two choices for a main entrÈe, along with fruit, veggies and milk. At the high school level, there is a variety of offerings in the cafeteria, including pizza, burgers, tacos, chicken, sandwiches and salads. Whether it’s elementary or secondary, are the meals served in school good for kids?Since the second week of October is National School Lunch Week, the NFH asked participants if they believed school lunches were healthy and nutritious. Check out these answers.

Jackie Sieben, kitchen manager at Meridian Ranch Elementary School
Colorado Springs
We are serving school lunches that are above the standard that is required by the state and federal governments. We have to follow really strict guidelines as to what we are allowed to serve. Starting this year, we cut out all desserts, so there are no cookies and limited pudding. Instead, we are serving more fresh veggies and fruit and only baked chips. Also, we no longer serve 2 percent milk, only 1 percent or skim.

Sheri Osborne
It seems like the schools do a good job, but I think they struggle to provide enough variety. My kids are really picky eaters, so they usually pack a lunch. But on the days they do eat a school lunch, I notice that veggies and fruit are served each time. But even if the schools do serve a healthy choice, I’m not sure that kids always eat it. For the most part, I think they do a good job; it’s just hard not to have the same thing all the time.

Johnny O’Neill
Colorado Springs
I think the school lunches would be better if they didn’t serve the same stuff every day. If kids didn’t have a choice of bad stuff, like pizza every day, it would be better. Subway (sandwiches) and salads are the only two healthy choices. There are no hot veggies or soups. If they could offer those kind of choices at least once a month, that would be nice.

Sam Brown
They serve some nutritious lunches. But there is also pizza and fried stuff. A lot of people go for pizza because it is easier to eat. If they could do less pizza and put something else (available) that is healthier; (that) replaces the pudding with fruit.

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