Junk food for all! That was the scene in my 4 year olds classroom yesterday morning when I dropped her off at 9am. What? Parents weren’t informed of any reason nor given the option of making comment on the junk being given out in class that day. Usually we know of a party or celebration and can act accordingly.
Confused, I went to the school office to enquire. Why was my child being given junk food at school?! I explained…To me it’s an issue on so many levels. So many food sensitivities ie. gluten, dairy, eggs are just being discovered at this tender age. And is there a person on the planet who thinks a high sugar treat is conducive to learning?
My daughter is too young to be able to speak about detail of what she does and doesn’t eat at home. I am not sure if the school relying on young kids to say ‘no thank-you my mom wouldn’t approve’? OR ‘We are a’junk food adverse family..no thanks’ OR ‘I barely eat gluten as my daddy is sensitive to it so it may bother my tummy’ OR I only weigh 36 pounds so I won’t deal well with all that sugar’. Is anyone expecting that sort of thing from a 4 year old?
In retrospect I am still wondering how this all went down. Have schools become confused? The crap being doled out yesterday in class was labelled ‘school safe’. But clearly peanut-free doesn’t make it a good choice for all and shouldn’t give schools the right to give it out at will to such young kids without their parents knowledge.
Needless to say, my child came home with a nasty tummy ache. To anyone who thinks it is fun to give young kids these things without knowing if it is in their daily diet or not, here’s the scoop… If you cause a wee kid a health issue, even a seemingly minor tummyache it was not such a celebratory thing for all. Maybe its time we respect all of each other’s dietary choices no matter how foreign it may seem to us.
And it would appear from my experience that there is no policy on handing out food to kids past that of severe allergens. I was asked if I wanted my daughter to be left out of such food festivities in future. What? is anyone listening…What place does junk food have in a school, handed out to young kids? I was informed by the teacher (who I have the utmost respect for as a teacher..she is quite fabulous really) that she didn’t know the mom was bringing in the snack for the whole class to celebrate the birth of her new baby so couldn’t inform the parents in advance…Wow..and so you just hand it out? Clearly the Toronto District School Board (or at least the school) needs a policy around this.
Any other parents have experience with this? Please share as I am at a loss…