National School Lunch Week: 10-14 October

National School Lunch Week: 10-14 October

Fri 07 Oct 2011

Story by The Food Revolution Team

Eat Lunch, Share a Photo, Make a Revolution!

October 10-14, is National School Lunch week, as declared by America’s “lunch ladies” – the School Nutrition Association. It’s a chance to taste, explore, and talk about our school food. It’s the perfect time to visit the school cafeteria, engage with your school nutrition staff and school administration, and raise the game for your local Food Revolution.

Let’s join in on National School Lunch Week. Eat lunch at school and let’s see those lunch trays!

The school nutrition professionals are promoting “National Take Your Parents to Lunch Day” on October 12th. They encourage parents to visit their kids’ schools and have lunch. So do we. Please contact the school first to make sure you comply with any policies for visits.

This can’t be just for parents who have the flexibility to make it to school lunch. We want you to take a photo, share it on our “Best and Worst School Lunch” photo wall, and view other school lunches from around the country (and world). That way it won’t be a one-day event - it can help spark a conversation.

And then we want you to engage constructively with your school officials about how they can serve as a model for other schools or how their lunch can continue to improve to be fresher and healthier.

The Food Revolution spends so much time talking about the quality of school lunch not because we want to tear it down. We know that most nutrition and cafeteria staff work hard, and school meals are served under constraints that include budget, time, staff capacity, facilities, and ingredients.

It’s true that school food in America meets a baseline set of government standards. But that doesn’t mean it lives up to our expectations for our kids. All school food is not created equal. Under those basic regulations about school food, some kids are eating amazing school food and others are receiving unappealing junk, often in the same community.

For instance, October is also National Farm to School month. In many communities, farm-fresh produce featuring in school classrooms and cafeterias. Kids are experiencing field trips to farms and conversations with those who produce their foods. Don’t all our kids deserve that kind of attention to fresh food?

What can you do to make a difference this National School Lunch Week?

1. Eat lunch at school next week (get permission first). Document your experience.

2. Upload your lunch photo. Look at (and rank) photos of other lunches; get inspired by the “Best.”

3. Use our Toolkits to understand more about how school lunch works and find good questions to ask

4. Connect with other concerned parents and community members. Schedule a meeting with your principal, or even better, your district Nutrition / Food Services Director.

Too often, we don’t really know what is being served for school food. Let’s change that. Take advantage of National School Lunch Week and “Take Your Parents to Lunch Day.” Share your photo and activate your community!

We look forward to hearing how it goes on our Photo Wall and on Facebook.

The Food Revolution Team


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