First few weeks back at school and the social media world is all a-buzz about school lunches. In Canada, we have many restrictions about what may or may not be included in your children’s lunchboxes. And it’s causing a lot of controversy with parents and teachers alike.
This is the first year I have had to make my daughter’s lunch so my experience is limited in this area so far. Here’s the way I look at it:
First, why not be grateful we have the funds and resources to actually send our kids to school with a lunch and snacks. According to Breakfast for Learning, 1/3 of elementary students do not eat a healthy breakfast before school and 1 in 6 face hunger every year. In our region, Halton Food for Thought feeds breakfast, lunch or snacks to over 16,000 students a week,
Second, children with life threatening allergies also have the right to public education. I am blessed that my child doesn’t have any severe allergies but I have friends who have to navigate serious allergies every day. It may be inconvenient to find alternatives to nuts for a child with a peanut allergy and wheat or gluten for a child who has Celiac Disease but just imagine the challenges these parents face every single day trying to make sure it’s safe for their child to eat outside the home.
We understand the importance of keeping children with allergies safe, but should teachers be allowed to monitor treats and unhealthy foods that a parent chooses to include in their child’s lunch? This is a grey area for sure because not everyone has the same views on what is healthy and what is not. And that’s ok. Instead of arguing, let’s just find some alternatives.
Finally, how about we focus on all of the things we CAN put in our children’s lunches, instead of what we cannot. I will continue to post my ideas on Instagram and I’d love to see what you’ve got in your kids lunch bags. Let’s promise each other that we won’t judge what is or isn’t in our kids’ lunches, okay? Instead, let’s create a supportive environment for parents who are still searching for the BEST and IDEAL lunch for their one-in-a-billion child.
Here are few links to get your started: