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To assume if my reception child isn't eating...

112 replies

Donkeykong2019 · 24/11/2019 08:32

My DD is in reception. Food has been an issue to the point she was under the dietician. She says she doesn't like school dinners but I have persevered because I want her to eat. I have assumed that school would notice if she isn't eating and would have told me?

I've been having a panic that she isn't eating and no one has told me!

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Goldenchildsmum · 24/11/2019 08:35

If my child had food issues I'd give her a packed lunch not school lunches

Or if she wanted school lunches I'd give loads of snacks that I knew she would eat, in case she didn't like the school lunch on a particular day

And no, I wouldn't expect the school to notice what she ate or didn't eat

However if the dietician wants the school to report on her food intake, I'd ask the dietician to email the head teacher with that request

BlackSwanGreen · 24/11/2019 08:36

According to my DC, it depends on which teacher is on duty. Some make you eat a certain amount before you can leave the lunch hall, others are more relaxed about it.

Does she seem very hungry when you pick her up?

To be honest if you're that worried I'd send her with a packed lunch.

Donkeykong2019 · 24/11/2019 08:37

She got discharged from the dietician last year after we sorted out the fact she was taking in 10 odd pints of milk a day and we got a somewhat balanced albeit limited diet into her. I'd just assumed a school would notice a 4 year old child not eating :(

I'm not even sure school are aware there are food issues. Think I've fucked up big time.

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Starlight456 · 24/11/2019 08:38

In my ds’s primary. A list of none eaters goes to head.

There are children who they specifically keep an eye on what they are eating.

Goldenchildsmum · 24/11/2019 08:39

I don't think you've fucked up. You've realised that you probably need to look at this differently.

Change the way you do things. It's how we parent, we learn through mistakes!!

MegaBlock · 24/11/2019 08:42

I’m sure they would tell you, especially if it is a regular occurrence. I’ve had a phone call off school once to say my dd might be hungry as she hadn’t eaten the dinner.

She is a terrible eater. I wanted to persevere but in the end I’ve started sending her with pack up. Is that an option? Can you have a word with the school and ask them to contact you if she doesn’t eat anything?

Fatted · 24/11/2019 08:43

I'd send her in with a packed lunch TBH. You really should speak with the school about it. If they know it's an issue, they will make sure they monitor her.

My DC school send the kids home with their own rubbish. I'm not sure if it's a way of reducing the school's waste or if it's so parents know what exactly has been eaten. But it does help me know what my DC have eaten. It also stops them throwing uneaten food away and pretending they have eaten it.

unlimiteddilutingjuice · 24/11/2019 08:44

I wouldn't expect the school to notice, no. And tbh I wouldn't want them too as pressure to eat can make things worse and I wouldn't quite trust them to deal with it sensitively.
You have my sympathy OP as my boy is also a selective eater. I chose to send him for school dinners in the hope that he might try some new things. So far he has worked out that chicken burger is "like a big chicken nugget" and not to be feared Grin
Send her with a hearty snack for break time, offer a snack when she gets in and ask her how lunch went in a relaxed tone.
Incidentally, are you on the Mealtime Hostages FB page? I found it very helpful.

WaterSheep · 24/11/2019 08:44

She says she doesn't like school dinners

I would swap to packed lunches.

Children quickly figure out that so long as it looks like they've made a good attempt, they can go out to play. The fact is, most of their food ends up under the table.

If she doesn't like the school dinners, chances are she's not eating them.

Abibranning · 24/11/2019 08:44

In ours some do monitor but I'm not sure it ever gets to the parents. I had to put DS back onto sandwiches when I realised he was eating a slice of meat for lunch or a fish finger. Caretaker would approve him to throw the rest as it was vile.

LazyDaisey · 24/11/2019 08:45

Lots of picky eaters wouldn’t eat the school lunches in reception and the kids came home ravenous and ate then. I don’t think it’s a rare occurrence and one the school needed to flag up. Sorted itself out once they started bringing in packed lunches.

Bunnybigears · 24/11/2019 08:46

Speak to the school, out school has a list of kids who are watched more closely at dinner time and a report sent home with info on what they have/havent eaten.

itsmecathycomehome · 24/11/2019 08:46

There will be a lot of children eating at the same time, with a few very busy midday staff supervising a noisy and chaotic dinner hall.

I'm sure they do their best to notice the children who are not eating. At my school, children have to put their hand up and have their plate checked before they can leave. But it is not foolproof, and errors of judgement, new untrained staff, staff distracted by urgent incidents and so on can happen.

I think, given your child's really quite serious issues around food, you need to make school aware of the history and ask them to keep a particularly close eye on her. Suggest strategies for them to use if she refuses to eat, so that they are not inadvertently heightening her anxiety. Ensure that any issues are passed to you via the class teacher.

In our school there are a range of accommodations we can make, if necessary, but we must be made aware.

JassyRadlett · 24/11/2019 08:46

My eldest had similar issues with food; I think in Reception they are pretty hands on at lunch. Certainly my son’s teachers knew that he hadn’t been eating the dinners and we worked on it together, tried some strategies but ultimately agreed that even if the packed lunch I sent wasn’t the best nutritionally, it was better than the white bread roll he was having with his school dinners.

Donkeykong2019 · 24/11/2019 08:51

I don't ever see the class teacher as she is on slightly later starts and earlier pick ups so a TA brings her to the reception .

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ineedaholidaynow · 24/11/2019 08:51

You need to let the school know. They then maybe able to monitor her, or if resources are limited they may suggest packed lunches.

At DS’s Primary School all uneaten food from a packed lunch had to be taken home so parents could see what wasn’t being eaten.

ineedaholidaynow · 24/11/2019 08:54

I assume you must have discussed the pick ups/drop off with school can you contact that person to discuss this with. Would that be the SENDCo?

bloated1977 · 24/11/2019 08:55

As a dinner lady, we have 180 children with sometimes 2 people on duty (illness, people being called out etc) so I'd send her in with a packed lunch. We try as hard as we can to monitor what's being eaten and what not but sometimes children not eating enough can slip through.

drspouse · 24/11/2019 08:56

Same at my DCs' school in EYFS/KS1 anyway, all uneaten food goes home. Also at holiday club.

minisoksmakehardwork · 24/11/2019 08:57

Ds1 has to show his lunch box to his teacher otherwise he eats nothing. We tried the dinner staff checking but it often gets forgotten or he slips out unnoticed.

Definitely raise it with school. I assume if she's also in late starts and early finishes, there are other concerns so it could all be written into her support plan.

Donkeykong2019 · 24/11/2019 08:58

We are waiting on a big meeting as they only recognised there is a big issue two weeks ago.

She has a packed lunch one day a week because I know there's literally nothing that day she will eat but I had been hoping that having likes along unlikes along with peer pressure would encourage her to eat. The packed lunch comes home only half eaten.

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Wheredidigowrongggggg · 24/11/2019 09:08

Why is she on different hours? Are there other issues at play here?

Wheredidigowrongggggg · 24/11/2019 09:12

And yes talk to school, she needs differentiated treatment, unlike most others who might be a bit picky but are generally ok.

I didn’t eat anytning at school and had a terrible diet outside. I was off ill for a significant proportion of primary and am very small (my sister is way taller). I succeeded academically but worked hard. Still wonder if I would have done even better and been bigger and healthier with a little care taken about what I was eating. You are right to be concerned and to push this.

Tvstar · 24/11/2019 09:16

Fuck me! You gave her 10pintsof milk a day and then wondered why she wouldn't eat!!

Donkeykong2019 · 24/11/2019 09:17

She is on slightly adapted hours as she couldn't cope with the chaos at drop off and pick up so she starts 30 minutes later and finishes 30 minutes earlier.

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