Comments about ‘Students, parents, educators displeased with new school lunch standards’

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Published: Thursday, Sept. 27 2012 7:00 p.m. MDT

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Orem Parent
Orem, UT

My kids complains about the new lunch standards as well. He is 6 feet tall and weighs around 125 pounds. Far from overweight. Sadly he isn't getting enough food at school because a few obese kids are shifting the standards around. Kind of like dummying down education standards. Now we are dummying down the food standards to meet the needs. We almost need 3 lines at school based on the kids weight. Overweight, normal, underweight.

Sandy, UT

I don't have any problem with healthy food being served. Especially, since kids on reduced and free lunch likely don't get much of it at home. If my tax dollars are subsidizing food (which I think should be done for hungry kids) the sooner kids develop a taste for fruits and vegetables instead of french fries and chips the better. The payoff will be in five years, when kids who have been served healthy food since grade school, will have healthier bodies. If they are hungry, they can get more vegetables and fruit. A variety of fruits and vegetables are served every day. I'd rather my grandchildren get extra servings of fruits and veggies than fatty main dishes.

Mcallen, TX

Excuse my ignorance. Can't children bring food to school, to help with the hunger pains?

Orem, UT

I suggest parents go and have lunch at school with their kids a few times and see what's there. School lunches are junk, and the new standards are no help. While there are some fresh fruits and vegetables included, school lunches consist mostly of high-fat, processed foods that are nutritionally inadequate. The real problem, though, is that the government thinks they need to take care of us, rather than getting out of the way and allowing people to come with better solutions. But, how can kids be going hungry AND be obese? Something isn't right here.

Oahu, HI

What ever happened to that good old Brown Bag. The trouble is that for some poor kids this is all the food that they get, as they may or may not get dinner at home. Expect Food fights and also behavior problems do to being hungry. Also more kids hitting the Burger stands and 7-11's after school. Sweet Potato Fries taste nasty. I can do 2% mild but not Non Fat Milk. I prefer whole. My kids if they where still in School would just Brown Bag or wait till they got home. I worry most about the kids who have No Options. I believe that when this silliness is over the obese are still going to be obese. The also may be the subject of bullying as this will be seen as their fault. This is more likely to happen if the obese person is brown bagging. All in all this is about the Government trying to impose its will on the people. The way to end this in part is to make Obama a 1 term president.

Anon 64
Oahu, HI

Dear Orem Parent: To have 3 lines with different food for each one would be labeling and judgmental. Now in Hawaii we have Obese and we have Samoan who am i to say who is fat. This is a fault of the U.S. Government Not The Obese. The Obese are going to get their food and the food that they like there is little or no question about that. If you go to certain stores and use your false discount card the Government knows everything you buy and eat anyway. This information has been around for over a decade. The problem is not so much the food but the Waste of Food because it is thrown away because the kids WIll NOT eat it. Not eaten food is wasted food wasted food not a good idea. You can Not Force Feed the Kids. If you want to do this and do it right you have to start with K and move through 12 over a period of years. Over time the Government will get the idea and either rescind or ignore the new rules. This is the fault of people trying to enforce their will on others.

Liberal Ted
Salt Lake City, UT

We should be asking Michelle, what makes her qualified to be the czar over our childrens nutrition....Just like her husband no one is questioning her. Unless you consider the View an unbiased investigation journalism. Sadly that's the level of quality the media has become.

We need to start asking the tough questions and expect real results.

The sad part is, there are irresponsible people that have been allowed to breed and then they refuse to take care of the their children. Society steps in and offers free meals. Then society overfed and made them obese. Then society has to correct it.

Let's go to the core problem. The parent. They need to be held responsible.

Every time government has stepped in to solve the problem, it has just created more problems and more dependency.

I propose setting land to the side and have those on welfare go to that land, work the land and grow their own food. 1. They are working 2. They are no longer taking from society 3. They learn work and nothing is free 4. They gain job skills 5. Gets people moving and off the streets


It is somewhat reasonable for government to step in when there is a serious problem that affects all of society. High obesity rates impact healthcare costs for all of us. My problem is that I encourage my children to participate in athletics to help them maintain healthy bodies and weights. They are starving by the end of the school day, just as they are heading into their soccer and cross country practices. I was already told by a personal trainer that my soccer son was eating enough calories and that's why he was running out of steam. Limiting calories is a hard sell when caloric needs vary so much from one child to another. A scrawny freshman eats the same as a full grown senior athlete? I don't think so! A better way would be to have individual plans based on body size and weight, not a one size fits all. Big restrictions really don't help.

MC Ute
Midvale, UT

@Liberal Ted. Thank you for saying what I would love to be able to say as well as you did. How in the world did we all survive before the Obama's took over. You know how, we were not regulated to death, see Department of Education, we took care of ourselves and our own family. There are 47 million people on food stamps and yet there are hungry children, please give me a break. Stand behind somebody using a "Horizon Card, aka food stamps" at the grocery store and watch what they purchase and then watch the items they purchase with "the money they do not have". Everytime you receive Federal Money it comes with strings attached. Education needs to get out of the Feds hands and back into the local communities.

par, UT

I walk through the lunch room everyday and speak with the student in my school about the food the y are being served for lunch. The amount of strawberries thrown out was amazing, I joked with an administrator that if we made strawberry short cake they would eat it. The prepackaged apples are gross and mushy, and usually get thrown out. One day they had a cup of some type of brown paste looking stuff and that was thrown out by all. The amount of waste is astounding, but then most government projects have an extraordinary amount of waste. Would it be possible to give them options instead of everyone getting the same thing and the same amount. The 85 pound 6th grade girl is getting the same food as the 150 pound eighth grade boy. You gotta love socialism!

terra nova
Park City, UT

Perhaps a wholesale change in the way school lunch works is the key. Continue to offer healthy choices, but institute more of a buffet-style serving line where students are encouraged to "take all they want - but eat all they take," in order to reduce waste. Add a component aimed at teaching students about eating in a more healthy fashion. Do clinics for the students where chefs introduce trial recipes (think: cooking show). Ask for feedback (and take the novel approach of actually listening to it). Open lunch service earlier and later so that students can scale into lunch by grabbing a snack before and/or after the traditional lunch period. In other words, act as if you are running a business where you are genuinely concerned about retaining your clients. Treat the kids like valued customers instead of cattle. Get parents involved.

The problem with school lunch may not be the food, it may be Soviet-style central-planning coupled with an inflexible one-meal-fits-all approach.

Reduce waste. Increase freedom. Educate toward the healthier choices. Look for status as a test or pilot program. Apply for grants. Be leaders not followers. Think.

Go Utes!
Springville, UT

To many government regulations!
Does Obama really think that there is a one-size-fits-all plan for nutrition? How are athletes like football players, track runners, basketball players or wrestlers supposed to maintain themselves off of 850 calories per meal? What about those kids who only eat at school? how are they supposed to develop when they only get 1700 calories per day?

Columbus, OH

Hmm, kids are hungry but the garbage cans are overflowing with food. If you don't eat your whole lunch, don't complain about being hungry. Of course there's going to be a lot of grumbling at first, because these kids are accustomed to the french fries and other carb fillers. This sounds like the classic case of a parent sticking to their guns and not giving their kids dessert until they finish their veggies. If the garbage cans are empty of food and the kids are too hungry, then we have a problem.

Sanpete, UT

When I was in high school I had weightlifting 4Xs a week for 4 years. Then after that I had either football, basketball, wrestling or track practice. I had the metabolism of a hummingbird. What did I do to not have hunger pains? Just like worf said, I took extra food. I ate school lunch, which barely touched my needs, but then I also had 2-3 sandwhiches between classes too along with fruits.
It's not going to hurt anybody's feelings if you take extra food. But also, like Ted said, the parents need to take control. Get the government out. The meals schools serve aren't even healthy anyways--fries, hamburgers, chicken nuggets, canned fruits and vegetables. It has nutrition, sure, but not a whole lot. Canning fruits and veggies takes away tons of nutrition. If you want to fix it, be part of the solution.

Salt Lake City, Utah

I still remember when Reagan decided catsup was a vegetable.....

School lunch is a federally subsidized program - therefore, the federal government gets to have a say in it. The federal government consists of - believe it or not - voters! A majority of those voters (or at least a very vocal group of them) complained about the quality of school lunches and asked that changes be made so that tax money pays for healthier food instead of junk food.

Several of the commentators on this thread - who are slamming on Obama and blaming this all on him - have, on threads on junk food, obesity, and school lunch, complained about their tax money paying for junk food for fat kids. Now you are whining because someone listened to you and did something about it? Really?

I realize many conservatives think the Obama's are omnipotent, but they are not the ones who made this change, and the change was not made in a vacuum.

And if the kids choose to be hungry instead of eating the food they are given, well - that is a choice they are making. It is their own fault.

@ worf: Sit for a shock - I agree with you.

Springville, UT

Hilarious! Michelle is giving you a "taste" of the food mandates that are going to be enforced upon the rest of during the next four years. Marvelous!

Nation's economy is in the toilet, Middle East is a burning revolution, national interests abroad are at risk, ambassadors and other U.S. personnel murdered, national debt spiraling out of control, education and related standards plummeting, gasoline prices more than doubled, domestic coal and energy extraction shut down, real unemployment at depression levels,...

And you people want more of this?

You just can't get enough punishment?

Well, you can look forward to national mandates on what you and I are allowed to eat. And it won't be filling.

Springville, UT


Atta boy. Spoken like a true prison warden.


I'm sorry. People are complaining because healthy food is being forced on their kids? You prefer junk food and empty calories be all that is offered? It says in the article that kids can take more, they just don't.

If your kid is coming home hungry, maybe you should teach him how to make his own (larger) lunch each morning.

I do agree with the statement, that local control, following the federal guidelines, would be ideal. Hopefully, once the Federal administrators get the program off to a good start and get feedback from local school districts, that will happen.

Teaching kids to eat healthier is a good thing. I can't believe people are complaining because their kids don't get to eat Tater Tots every day. Amazing.

Springville, UT


The issue is whether you prefer "force" or "freedom" and there is a difference.

"We're forcing you to be good." "We're forcing you to eat right." "We're forcing you to be safe." We're forcing you to obey." And "it's all for the common good," or, in this case, "it's for the children."

Personally, I prefer freedom of choice.

This nation's people have been slowly induced into trading freedom for a "healthy meal," a "free phone," or whatever other handout is offered. But there's always a price for that free thing. In this case, like others, it's freedom. And ultimately, someone else will control us.

Let the kids and parents make these choices. Believe me, they'll survive.

Just like you want the government to stay out of your bedroom, I want Michelle to stay out of our kitchens.

DN Subscriber
Cottonwood Heights, UT

I don't care if they are feeding the kids Twinkies or turnip greens, that is not something our tax dollars should be funding at all. I don't mind paying for teachers and math books, but the responsibility for feeding kids belongs to THEIR parents, not every taxpayer. (But, I applaud charitable individuals or groups who want to provide free food to anyone-- if government red tape will allow it.)

We are required to provide a free public education. That used to be reading, writing and arithmetic and a classroom. Now, despite being broke, taxpayers are providing one, two, or even three meals as well, which is absurd.

Government funding comes with strings attached, and they get to call the shots on how "their" (really "OUR") money is spent and with that comes the power to control how state and local tax money is spent.

Get the schools out of the cafeteria business and turn it over to concessionaires. The convenience stores near schools are making a fortune selling food to school kids, so there is money to be made. Let the vegetable, meat and sweet sellers compete for lunch money (provided by the parents, not taxpayers).

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