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28/06/2013 at 08:17
I've been pondering the cost of school meals since I realised in September I'm going to be paying £80 per month for them - actually we just got a letter yesterday saying that they are going up to £2.10 per day so £84 per month or over £100 on a 5 week month.
The school don't allow you just to take a packed lunch in, there has to be a reason for it, so I'm going to phone the school this morning to tell them I want E to have a packed lunch every day. At least if I can get her on packed lunches all week then I'll only be paying for one child which I'm used to.
This week this has been what E has had for her school dinner:
Monday - Pizza, chips, bread and ice cream.
Tuesday - Tuna sandwich, potatoes, bread and crispie cake.
Wednesday - Curry, rice, bread and chocolate cake.
Thursday - Turkey, yorkshire pudding, chips and yoghurt.
God knows what she will have today. AIBU in saying to the school that I am not happy with what she is eating, therefore I want her on packed lunch every day from now on? E also wants to take a packed lunch every day.
28/06/2013 at 08:22
Hmm that's not exactly what I would call healthy, I can see why you're annoyed at having to pay that. There's no need for the chips or the chocolate cake IMO. At N's school they have the most balanced varied meals I've ever seen. They occasionally get a chocolate pudding but there are so many different vegetables, salads, meats, fish etc. He's on packed lunch though as it's cheaper and he eats with me in the evening anyway.
28/06/2013 at 08:24
There's not a huge amount of vegetables in your list!
I can't believe they make you have school dinners, it's surely up to a parent what their child eats, even if some parents make bad choices that's their decision isn't it? I don't like all this meddling and forcing stuff on people. Much better to educate and still allow everyone to have free will, it's a dodgy path otherwise.
28/06/2013 at 08:33
Would you be happy if that's what your child had to eat for the week at school?
Another thing is, I never know what to make for tea, where as if she's had a packed lunch, I know exactly what she's had and know what to make for tea.
Do you think its reasonable for me to request she takes a packed lunch?
28/06/2013 at 09:03
Iv spoke to the school as well as they are allowed to choose themselves so one day L had 'mashed potato and gravy' which was actually shepherds pie but he had a salad on the side, another time he had a jacket potato and a slice of turkey which I suppose is fine but ud think they'd offer the actual jp filling.
So apparently it's to make them independent choosing their own meals, which is all well and good but I send him a packed lunch cos I think at least I know what he's having.
I don't know how your school can impose that all children must have school dinner, tbh I'd be saying the school doesn't cater for your child's diet. We both work full time and earn an ok wage but I couldn't afford £100 a month on school dinners especially when it's sh1te
Yes definitely. I think it's unreasonable of the school to demand they have dinners. You could say as well that you like to have a cooked meal together as a family in the evening and her having dinners at school disrupts your family life.
Let us know what they say x
28/06/2013 at 09:22
CP - You would think at 9yrs E would know what 'goes together' but obviously not. She still comes home saying she's had tuna sandwich and beans, curry and beans etc, totally random. The price is scandalous, there's no way it would cost me nearly £100 a month to feed 2 kids for the month.
I've spoken to them and they said as a compromise they would allow her to have packed lunch 3 days a week, which is something.
28/06/2013 at 09:23
I work with the catering dept in our council and they do have nutritional guidelines they have to meet but also balancing with providing meals the kids will be happy to eat, so I'd imagine the pizza would be wholewheat base, then veg topping? Agree theres too many chips on that menu although our schools offer two hot options each day as well as jackets, sandwiches and baguettes, so it is likely that there are other carb options but E like most kids is choosing chips because they are there. Our schools also provide the parents with the menus each month so parents know what's available to the kids. The next council authority to us send the menus out weekly and you have to make your choices and send them back so you choose your child's meal and know exactly what they are getting.
I totally agree that they are out of order not allowing packed lunches, I'm sure you can't be alone in wondering how you can afford that, especially when you can't guarantee what they are eating is of the standard you'd like it to be.
28/06/2013 at 09:42
weekender, I said to the school that I'm sure there are loads of healthy options but I'm sure like most kids E isn't choosing them. A school next to me sends out weekly menus where you choose your childs meal which I think is a good idea, especially when they first start school.
28/06/2013 at 09:44
I can't believe that they don't let you take packed lunches, that is mad! Glad that she's allowed them 3 days per week
28/06/2013 at 09:58
I'm really funny about what the children eat and wouldn't be happy with that SW! I don't think it is unreasonable at all to refuse to have school dinners anymore. Good luck!
28/06/2013 at 10:08
the school don't let you take packed lunches?! WTF?! What if you can't afford school meals? We do pay for ours to have hot meals at school/nursery as we work F/T so I know I can get away with just giving them a sandwich/toastie etc for tea.
We get a menu every term from the council detailing whats offered every day, its a 3 week rotation.
28/06/2013 at 10:16
£100 a month is a lot, especially for what they seem to be eating. I cant believe that they are made to have school dinners. I've got so much to learn for when E goes to school.
I would be sending a packed lunch, then like you say, you know what they're eating, and if they're going to be having a hot meal at home as a family in the evening then they don't need something hot during the day too.
28/06/2013 at 10:22
What's the school's reasoning for no packed lunches?
What can they do if you refuse school meals altogether?
I'm not keen on school meals, plus I wouldn't know how much of their lunch they've actually eaten which is why mine have a packed lunch and then a proper tea when they get home.
28/06/2013 at 10:25
Sshh the reasoning was that it takes them ages to eat a packed lunch.
I don't know what they would do if I said no to school meals, nothing they could do I suppose, unless they suggested I take her home for lunch.
They actually had the cheek to tell me they had a healthy packed lunch policy so she'll be sending E home with a leaflet - no crisps, fizzy drinks or chocolate, which is fine but they have a nerve when they are feeding her chips twice a week.
28/06/2013 at 10:28
The cheek of it, your packed lunches would be far more healthy than the junk they're serving up. If they kick up a fuss over you doing packed lunches then i'd be tempted to take it to the press, and let people know just how "healthy" the school lunches are that they're serving up.
28/06/2013 at 10:34
Erm...food is food. Surely packed lunch or school lunch all gets eaten at the same speed?! What a dopey reason. Just give her packed lunches and let that be the end of it.
Our school has a healthy eating policy too which I've never had a problem adhering to.
28/06/2013 at 10:35
I know chids, shocking. There's only 3 weeks left of this year so I'll do the 3 days packed lunch until then but I'm going to speak to the headmaster when they go back in September and tell him I can't afford to pay for the school meals and see what he says.
J is so picky so I know he'll end up just having a ham sandwich every day and there's no way I'm paying £2.10 a day for that.
28/06/2013 at 10:48
I had "words" with C's headteacher, when he complained about me putting a chocolate biscuit in C's lunchbox, as they are a "healthy school". He sent letters home to loads of parents about it, who moaned to each other about it, but never took it to the head.
I told him i'd stop putting them in, when the kids eating hot dinners stopped eating chips, pizza, and cakes. He tried justifying it, I mentioned Ofsted, he shut up.
28/06/2013 at 10:53
Good for you AK, when I make a packed lunch for E its always healthy but I don't mind her having a bag of crisps or a chocolate biscuit every other day so I'm not complying with their rules and like you said, if she comes back with a letter I'll say what you said. She used to have a packed lunch twice a week last term and I put either crisps or a chocolate biscuit in and no one ever mentioned it.
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