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Page 8 | to think even Gove wouldn''t ban packed lunches

(433 Posts)
kim147 Fri 12-Jul-13 07:30:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

OP’s posts: |
MrButtercat Fri 12-Jul-13 13:33:54

Yes Cat and the suspect meat too.

Wheresmycaffeinedrip Fri 12-Jul-13 13:34:46

By the time it's sat around and gone to mush you'd be better off eating the tray tbh

Talkinpeace Fri 12-Jul-13 13:36:52

Does NOT affect






so its just Gove getting another of his gold stars and a pat on the head from his mum

Bellbird Fri 12-Jul-13 13:45:27

I think we'll find that most of the posters today are either very pleased with their school for having a decent, well-run canteen with excellent quality and choice - lucky Mums(!); or that their school doesn't meet the standards that they would hope for in their child's main meal of the day.

If the schools that have invested well into their school dinner facilities decide to ban packed lunches, they may have a point*. However, there may be other schools that do rubbish dinners that then try to get on the band wagon to make more money by banning packed lunches. That would be abusing their authority and court cases could be made against them!

*Even schools that do have great food may have restrictions on eating times which prevents the children from attending lunchtime clubs. This is one of the reasons why my daughter finds school meals very restricting. Everything needs to be considered; the children have rights!

Talkinpeace Fri 12-Jul-13 13:47:05

How would they enforce it in secondary schools - where the kids do not go to a dining hall, often leave the site etc etc

5madthings Fri 12-Jul-13 13:48:36

Buying school dinner for four children would cost me £50 a week, I don't spend any where near that on pack ups and they are healthier. They also fill my boys up which the school dinners don't. Plus if they are last in the dinner queue they get whatever is leftover...pasta, potatoes and peas ...really healthy and balanced, not.

IsabelleRinging Fri 12-Jul-13 13:48:51

So what really has changed in the last 30 years since I was at primary school? Because back then every child had a school lunch (except about 3 children in the whole school who went home), my mother never questioned the merits of a pudding every day (it certainly didn't make us fat), and the children all managed to eat their lunch (mostly) without needing special excuses from their parents about how their precious DC were too fussy and would starve. Come to think of it we all managed to drink water as well and didn't pass out through dehydration without the provision of syrupy drinks for lunch. I have seen the appalling about of junk put in some children's lunch boxes, and heard the excuses about why from parents at school. The school lunches, although not perfect are a hell of a lot better than many children's packed lunch!

greenbananas Fri 12-Jul-13 13:49:33

How are they proposing to cater for different dietary requirements? Will they be serving halal and kosher meat? What will they do about children who have the sensory issues and autism mentioned up thread? Surely this is a way of excluding children who have specific requirements.

My DS will always have packed lunches, whatever the rules turn out to be. He has so many severe food allergies that it would be basically impossible for any school to cater for him safely. I would hate for him to be the only child in the school that brings food from home.

LondonJax Fri 12-Jul-13 13:57:15

As I'd emailed the dept of education (as I mentioned up thread) I've been sent the link to the website for the report. It is on the BBC website too but if you've missed it it's here ...

And, it does give head teachers a checklist which includes how to ban packed lunches completely - basically ban packed lunches for the foundation year or year 7 (depending on school type), and keep that ban in place as the children move through the years so by the end of 5 or 6 years your school no longer has packed lunches.

So I've sent a copy of the reply I got in February, stating that a national ban is not on the cards, back to them asking them to explain the difference in points of view...I won't hold my breath.

I've also told them that having the owners of Leon as the figureheads for this is doing them no favours at all. Better to have asked the school dinner cooks who are on the committee to speak up about it than those two, no matter how willing, able or fanatical they are about kids healthy eating habits. Their being involved so publicly in this report is taking the edge off something very important - the health of our kids.

5madthings Fri 12-Jul-13 14:03:24

Isabelle we had paced cues at school.

My kids are not fussy and eat anything and they only drink water at school. My meals are still more balanced and a decent portion and no they don't need custard/cake everyday and its bloody crap that if you have a school dinner you get a pudding every day yet if you have a pack up you aren't supposed to have cake etc. So homemade banana and yogurt loaf or pear cup cakes made with whole meal flour etc is notok but cake and chocolate custard is! I still give mine a small treat in their lunch, tho not everyday. But then we don't regularly eat puddings anyway tbh, they are normally something we have when we have guests round. They do get sweets is smarties, milky way or in hot weather an ice Molly etc. Not everyday just here and there. They eat a good balanced diet with everything in moderation. I only cook one meal and they eat it or leave it.

But some children have allergies or special needs it sensory issues etc.

If the school provided healthy food at a better price than I could prepare it myself I would do school dinners as making four pack ups a night is a pita, but they don't so pack ups it is.

Tiggles Fri 12-Jul-13 14:09:13

IsabelleRinging it doesn't actually bother me that a school dinner has a pudding every day. It does bother me that the government say oh "65%of packed lunches have either a pudding or a packet of crisps in them, how unhealthy they had better have school dinners" ie they had better have a pudding everyday.

gymboywalton Fri 12-Jul-13 14:09:37

i work in a school and th smell of the school lunches makes me want to retch every single day.

my children HATE school lunches and eat a very healthy packed lunch.
i am also not sure i could AFFORD school lunches evry day!!

BeCool Fri 12-Jul-13 14:11:19

I don't think Gove is going far enough.
Fuck it - just ban children!

BeCool Fri 12-Jul-13 14:11:56

<tongue in cheek>
Gove is an amazing dickhead.

geeandfeesmum Fri 12-Jul-13 14:13:00

For me it is not about the cost of school meals. I am sure DS & DD's packed lunches cost more than what they would pay for school lunches. They both have different foods in their lunches because of different dietary requirements.

It is also not about whether the school food is nice or palatable or not. Although, this is obviously important, it is not an issue at either of my children's schools.

The basic fact of the matter for me is that the government have no right to choose what I am feeding my children. They are not responsible for deciding what my children eat. We enjoy a home cooked family meal around a table every night. Always cooked completely from scratch. I see no reason for my children to have a hot meal at school as well. My DS, who is only 6, is extremely conscious of his weight. He is bang on the perfect weight but is very aware of junk food and refuses to eat certain foods because they have too much salt/sugar/fat in. I don't know where he has developed this from. I have always explained truthfully what is in our cooking. He even comments on fish not being sustainable. He did not eat much at all when he had school dinners. Some days, he eats his all/most of his packed lunch, other days he barely touches it. I know this and can compensate with our evening meal as necessary.

DD is autistic and on a dairy free diet due to bowel issues. She mainly eats fruit & vegetables with the occasional bit of bread or pasta for packed lunch.

I choose to send packed lunches so I know what they are eating and what they are leaving.

I wish the government would just butt out of parents business and get on with dealing with the real issues that are affecting this country.

OrmirianResurgam Fri 12-Jul-13 14:20:00

Couldn't afford them. My eldest 2 used to have them once a week but stopped that as they got fed up with boring choices. I'd love them to have cooked meals everyday - anything to prevent me having to make packed lunches! But it's too expensive.

Bellbird Fri 12-Jul-13 14:22:36

This may just be a ploy to drive a wedge throught the middle of society??? The people who can only just afford school dinners will be forced to pay for them, regardless of quality. The rich in private schools will always have nice food and those on benefits will get them for free.

The quality has to be sorted first! Of course, all heads would like to believe that their schools meet the standards, but in reality that just is not the case. The caterers at my daughter's school would really need to up their game in order to impress us.

mankyscotslass Fri 12-Jul-13 14:23:14

I would love my three to have school dinners, but the cost of £27.75 a week, and the fact they don't differentiate portion sizes, mean i don't.

Awomansworth Fri 12-Jul-13 14:29:46

Our primary state school has very good meals, cooked on site. I get given a menu and decide which options dc will have, they are not fussy eaters, so plenty of choice. I always check with them that they have had what I requested.

I appreciate we are lucky... but if I didn't have the above options I would definitely send them with pack lunches. The thought of sent in ready meals does not appeal.

I don't agree that anyone other than the parent should decide that the option of a packed lunch is no longer available.

JakeBullet Fri 12-Jul-13 14:33:25

Oh God I'd be delighted if DS would have school dinners every day. He would even get them free due to me being on benefits. Unfortunately being autistic and fussy I have no option but to make him a daily packed lunch.
I wish Mr Gove the best of British luck in persuading DS to eat a school dinner grin

piprabbit Fri 12-Jul-13 14:35:53

JakeBullet - have you spoken to the school about applying for FSM? The school gets extra money for every pupil eligible for FSM - even if they don't actually eat them grin. Might be worth looking in to.

Bellbird Fri 12-Jul-13 14:39:56

Awomansworth: I agree with you, because at my daughter's next school she'll have the better deal. At the moment though, my daughter's school has these ready meals you speak of.

At the Primary level, there are few schools that have the money for the facilities - which restricts lunchtime sporting activities*; the quality of food and presentation; or the nouse to realise that Juniors need more food on their plates than Infants!

*Children should not be prevented from doing sport because they have to adhere to restrictive meal times.

Mimishimi Fri 12-Jul-13 14:42:03

When I was at school, school lunches were almost invariably more unhealthy than the packed lunches my mother sent. Chips, pizzas, fried chicken, crisps , greasy overboiled peas and carrots. All the kids who ate them regularly were significantly more overweight than those of us who had lunches from home.

This has nothing to do with trying to make British kids healthier and everything to do with making sure that their mates who get the contracts to supply the meals to the schools aren't cheated out of their profits .

TabithaStephens Fri 12-Jul-13 14:44:47

Parents who give their children crap like dairlylea lunchables and whole tubes of pringles for lunch should be taken to court. It's them that are ruining it for everyone else.

shockers Fri 12-Jul-13 14:45:26

I work in primary and have seen some shocking packed lunches (the worst being, 2 sticks of Pepperami, a bag of pork scratchings and a chocolate mousse), but I have also seen many sensible packed lunches that are far healthier than the option provided by many LAs.

Should the sensible masses be affected by lazy lunch givers?

My DD (at special school) was eating a pile of orange, grated cheese with several slices of bread for her school lunch every day. She unsurprisingly became overweight. After many requests for more supervision at lunchtime were ignored, we gave her packed lunches. She slimmed back down to her normal weight within weeks.

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