April 10, 2014
This is an article written by Ron Nixon on January 25, 2012. The main points of this article are about the new rules of the national school lunch program. The main goal of this program is to reduce childhood obesity and improve the nutrition standards of what the youth are eating in school. It had been 15 years since there were any changes to the program. The new rules improve school nutrition as well as give the schools more flexibility in what foods they serve (Nixon, 2012). However, there are still some concerns Some of the new rules are that all of the milk that is served must be non fat or low fat and there are also guidelines in place that set limits on the amount of salt and trans fats in foods as well as doubling the amount of fruits and vegetables served and require that all grains served are whole grains (Nixon, 2012). The authors audience was for a mainstream population as well as for parents, professionals who work for children, and anyone who has an interest in nutrition. The article was written objectively by providing the facts and did not appear to have any bias. However, the reporter did seem to interview people who were all in favor of the new rules for school meals and did not provide any information on perspectives of those who did not agree with the new rules.
I believe this is important because as child development professionals who are interacting with children on a daily basis we can advocate for healthy nourishing school lunches. We can also model healthy eating habits and exercise to the children that we interact with. Teachers can do in class activities that promote healthy eating and exercise. Some recommendations would be arranging a field trip to a local farm, starting a garden with the students, having a cooking day where you teach the children how to cook a certain meal. Another activity would be to make a class cookbook where everyone brings in a recipe that they like to cook at home. You can also arrange workshops that educate and demonstrate growing, cooking and consumption of healthy foods. The new rules for school meals and the new standards that have been stepped is a step in the right direction for improving quality of foods served in schools, but there is still a lot of changes that need to be made. All children should have access to quality and nutritious food in schools.