My son’s school has banned birthday cake and takes unhealthy food out of his lunchbox. I’ve had enough

Parenthood

July 19, 2023 | 12:00 pm


A mom has fought back at her son’s preschool for confiscating food from her son’s lunch box in an effort to encourage healthy choices.

Mum-of-two, Emma Clarke, from the UK, said the nursery’s strict food policy means they seize everything from fruit, juice, smoothies, nuts and jam sandwiches.

He says they even ban cake at children’s birthdays and make them celebrate with a wooden cake.

Recently, Emma had enough of lunchbox surveillance and decided to write a note to the school with a simple message

Emma Clarke has criticized her son’s preschool for confiscating food from his lunchbox in a bid to encourage healthy choices.
Kennedy News and Media

Emma was first alerted to the strict rules when she discovered her four-year-old son Archies’ 99-calorie packet of mini cookies had been removed from his lunchbox on day one.

She was even more horrified when the same thing happened later that week with a bag of chips.

The preschool returns food to the lunchbox at the end of the day because it’s okay to eat when [kids] I’m not in kindergarten.

Emma Clare said she placed a note in her lunchbox telling them not to remove any items and they did anyway.
Kennedy News and Media

Emma says both times she packed her son a well-balanced lunch that included a sandwich, fruit, yogurt, and a lunchbox-sized snack.

Once they even confiscated one of his two mandarins because one was enough.

Emma says she thinks teachers shouldn’t be able to have a say in what her child can and can’t eat and is concerned about what this is teaching the children.

Several similar incidents occurred during Archie’s 10 months in kindergarten, to the point where a teacher even pulled Emma aside at pickup time and handed her a list of their lunchbox rules.

It says: Please do not include sweets, sodas, fruit drinks, smoothies, chips, salty snacks, chocolate, cookies, cakes, or jam sandwiches. They also suggest small portions.

And then the letter outlines an ideal lunchbox: a whole-wheat sandwich, fruit, a single serving of cheese or yogurt, a serving of lean meat, and a bottle of water.

The school principal said their rules are very similar to those seen in nearly all preschools nationwide and defended their choices as encouraging healthy choices for children.

Emma’s son has now remained concerned about what his mother is preparing for his lunch, for fear of things being confiscated.

They open their lunchboxes and take out the items in front of them, Emma explains, adding that she’s concerned about the kind of language teachers use about food.

So he decided to take a stand. I told them I wasn’t happy about them taking away his food and I actually once put a note in his lunchbox telling them not to remove any items and they did it anyway, says Emma.

One teacher even took Emma Clarke aside and handed her a list of their lunchbox rules.
Kennedy News and Media

This was the note:

It read: Please all can stay in Archies lunch to eat, thank you.

After the message fails to reach the teachers, Archie is still worried about his lunch box.

Sounds like an exercise to tick off so that daycare can be recognized as a place to eat healthy, Emma reflects on the situation.

It’s just so if someone from the council came in and looked at what was in their lunchbox, they’d be in trouble if they didn’t stick to their wholesome school lunches.





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