Another unintended consequence of the new school lunch mandates from the Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act is emerging. Schools are opting out of the federal school lunch program altogether.
Fox News’ Rick Leventhal reported on a New York school that has decided to forego participating in the federal school lunch program which provides funding to districts that follow certain guidelines including calorie counts and green energy initiatives. Schools use the federal monies to allocate free and reduced lunches to students in need, as defined by federal law.
Leventhal reports that kids have stopped buying school lunches in favor of bringing it from home, or in many cases, students are throwing fruits and vegetables into the trash instead of eating them. One contributor to Leventhal’s report suggested that the extremely low calorie counts required by the law may leave students so hungry they will binge when they get home from school, which could actually contribute to unhealthy eating habits.
The New York school in Leventhal’s report isn’t the only one to ditch the federal school lunch program. Superintendent Kay Salvaggio of Niskayuna told the Times Union that her school will also be dumping the program citing wasted food, smaller portion sizes and financial reasons.
Disguised as a plan to reduce childhood obesity, First Lady Michelle Obama championed the HHFKA in 2010. Included in the law, however are vast overreaches of federal government authority, higher costs for individual schools, and “green energy” demands.