Schools everywhere have revamped their menus to serve healthier foods. They now require students to choose at least one fruit or vegetable at every meal. But just because the kids are taking healthier foods doesn’t mean they’re actually eating them.
At one school district in Florida, the amount of food being thrown out has doubled since kids were forced to make healthier choices. In fact, students are tossing out so much produce that administrators want to install video cameras by the cafeteria trashcans. So they can monitor what students are throwing away.
They also hope to discover whether presentation can increase consumption – like, serving apple slices instead of whole apples. And what kids won’t eat no matter what - like squash – that should be eliminated from school menus.
Parents say they don’t want “trash-cams.” For one, they say it’s a waste of money. They’re also worried that their kids will be singled out and punished.
But administrators insist the cameras will photograph only the trays kids carry – not their faces.
They say it has nothing to do with identifying the kids – just the food that’s being wasted.
Still, plenty of teachers and experts insist it shouldn’t be the school’s responsibility to teach kids how to eat better. It should be the parents. They point out that kids tend to eat things they’re served at home. And if they never get squash and broccoli at family dinners, they’re not going to try it at school.
Do you think using “trash cams” to fine-tune school menus is a good idea? Weigh in at Facebook.com/JohnTesh.