Is school lunch a problem?
Why does school food need to be good? Students need quality food to make it through school days. If they don’t, students will have a negative day because all they will be thinking about is food. They will not be learning. Today we see that public school foods have improved but need more improvement.
Food is very important for students not only for their health but for learning because they can not work on an empty stomach or with a sick stomach. In an interview with an Oakland student, Edgar Peña, he shared his experience on how school food was awful and how it made him sick he said “I stopped eating school food because it makes me sick after seeing how bad it was for me and my health I decided I didn’t want to keep putting garbage in my body so I started bringing my own food”(Peña). This shows and proves how bad school food is and how it affects students. So in order to get less of these complaints schools should give better food.
In the past the food was not that good, there was packaged food and that was not as healthy. Yes, there have been small improvements here and there, but there is more work to be done. An Oakland lunch lady named Catherine Posey that has been working on school lunch duty for 20 years said that “I know school food is healthier than the past and there is more different options the than before”(Posey) the fact that school food has gotten healthier shows that its a good sign that it might just keep getting better with time since Ms. Posey has been working on this for 20 years she has seen a lot and she agrees that it needs more improvements but that it’s getting there. It’s good that it’s improving but it justs need to be improving faster.
As of January 2018, below is the current Menu. what students like for food and what they would like for school lunches is for example burgers, better pizza, pasta, ice cream etc. As we all know that is not the case right now. What we need is something good and healthy so we could get through the day by being the healthy and sharp day so that we could learn and get a better understanding because we wouldn’t be thinking about the bad food we would have eaten. What we also don’t like is food being wrapped in plastic this happens in a lot of schools and this just makes us think that is not fresh and just being warmed up which is not healthy or good as fresh foods.
So what options does Oakland have? Due to finances, often private schools get better school lunches than public schools. The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) is a non-profit organization that helps schools and students have access to good and healthy food and they have lots of experience with this since they were established in 1946. This shows that these kinds of programs know what they are doing. The United States Department Of Agriculture (USDA) had this very interesting information about the national school lunch program (NSLP) it said “The National School Lunch Program is a federally assisted meal program operating in public and nonprofit private schools and residential child care institutions. It provides nutritionally balanced, low-cost or free lunches to children each school day. The program was established under the National School Lunch Act, signed by President Harry Truman in 1946”(USDA). The fact that the lack of experience is extraordinary shows that they know what is good for students that are in school and since they are not focusing on making money t this is a program that all of the schools should have because it also helps the students that come from low-income families they don’t pay usually for their food so this also show the equity on how low-income students get the same chances as other on getting healthy and good food to get through their academic day.
In addition, an Oakland mother and an OUSD worker named Flor Pablo said that school food is not healthy for students and causes students to gain weight and some just don’t eat because it’s not good. She said, “school food needs to improve variety wise and healthy wise”(Pablo). The fact that school food is not healthy shows that the OUSD needs to switch food programs and that it will make a change it will not only be healthy but it will also be good. This shows that in our community there are lots of struggles and inequity so if Oakland gets better food programs like the NSLP they will not only have equity in our community but have healthier and better food.
To conclude if the OUSD doesn’t change our lunch program then people will just not keep eating and others will just keep eating unhealthy food. The school food needs a whole lot more improvement and having better food programs shall do the trick for many students.
Peña, Edgar. “Oakland Food Interview.” 11 Dec. 2018.
In this interview, I asked a life academy 12th grader Edgar Peña and I asked him what was his experience with school food.
Posey, Catherine. “Oakland Food Interview.” 11 Dec. 2018.
I interviewed Ms. Posey about her opinion about school food because she has been working on school duty for 20 years.
Pablo, Flor ,. “Oakland Food Interview.” 12 Dec. 2018.
An Oakland mother and an OUSD worker who works with kids.
USDA. “National School Lunch Program (NSLP).” Food and Nutrition Service, www.fns.usda.gov/nslp/national-school-lunch-program-nslp.
This shows what kind of a program the NSLP is
OUSD.”Oakland Unified School District(OUSD).”School District,
This shows the lunch menu for january of 2019