Saturday, August 22, 2009

Lunch schedule

Some high school students are reportedly scheduled for lunch at 10:00.

Does this raise any issues? For example, if a student entitled to a free lunch eats at 10:00, is that meal sufficent to allow a student to participate in after school activities which may last until late afternoon?

18 comments:

Mark Rauterkus said...

Free or not free is hardly an answer to the time question. Split the time into a time matter and if the lunch is free is of no matter on time.

Nutrition is a big component to wellness, of course. And, when it comes to performance in afterschool activities, be it sports or other endeavors, getting the necessary fuel is of high concern.

Is the free breakfast plan still on for this year? That was nice last year.

amymoore said...

What is the official capacity of the Reizenstein building? If the building originally held more students than are currently assigned there, why are students eating lunch at 10 am? Did lunch start at 10 am when it was a middle school? The 10 am lunch is not a rumor; it is on the schedule that was received in the mail yesterday. When I complained about it, I was told that the 9th graders at Frick had a 10 am lunch this past year. Two wrongs don't make a right.

Questioner said...

Are grades 6-8, 9-10 and 11-12 kept strictly separate? That may be the reason some students need to eat at 10:00.

Questioner said...

Re: free or not free-

Many students could have issues with this schedule. But some students may be in a better position to pack food to eat after school and before activities. If everyone was able to pack food, there probably wouldn't be a need for a free lunch program.

amymoore said...

The lunch schedule is outrageous. Maybe they could save the free breakfasts for afterschool since the seniors will be having lunch at 10 am. Half of the kids probably aren't awake by 7:30 so they don't bother with the free breakfast but by 3 pm they will be ravenous! It will be a challenge to fix a healthy breakfast at 7 am and pack a lunch to eat just 3 hours later that will sustain an 18 year-old male for the next 5 hours. And then during sports season pack an additional meal to eat before practice.

Anonymous said...

I don't think that is absolutely crazy that they will be eating lunch at 10. There may be some students who are dragging in at 7:30 just like there will be some students up at 5:30 and 6 who will be starving by 10. That means there will be another 4 hours before they get out of school. Maybe the school can talk to some organizations or corporations about donating a small snack to help them get through the afterschool program. Or...they can do like we did when I was in HS...fundraise the money to buy snacks for the season. It really isn't rocket science.

Anonymous said...

Those student who are up at 5 or 6 can get the free breakfast that is offered to all students at Reizenstein at 7:30.

Anonymous said...

I have to agree with anonymous 10:51 and add that by high school and 12th grade in particular if any early lunch time is the worst hardship it ain't so bad. Perhaps there is an afterschool program where snacks are provided to participating kids in a high school. This way when nobody is showing up for EAP those snacks can be handed over to the kids on their way to a school bus to eat on the way to an away game.

Anonymous said...

Well, lots of things aren't a "particular" hardship in the grander scheme of things. However, it is more than 4 hours from 10:30 am (when I assume they'll be done with eating lunch) and the end of the school day.

I'm not sure what you mean when you say that 12th graders are best adapted -- perhaps those 9th grade parents should have been more vocal?!

The real question is why is necessary for anyone to be eating at that time? Is this due to the 7 grades format of the school? (though there were only 4 grades at Frick last year)

When Allderdice used to be a 7th-12th grade school were kids eating lunch this early?

To me it seems like another indication of a way in which schools are being "reformed" in ways that make more sense on paper and less sense in real life. Do all grades of kids really have to be separated to eat? Is this necessary because of the open design of the Reizenstein cafeteria and concerns about crowd control?

Occasionally, it does seem like there could be some attempt to make school actually pleasant and comfortable for students. Instead we judge things as being fine as long as they aren't the "worst hardship."

Questioner said...

Re: "Maybe the school can talk to some organizations or corporations about donating a small snack to help them get through the afterschool program." - Maybe the school COULD, but doubtful it will... no one will think about this issue except on test days.

Re: "they can do like we did when I was in HS...fundraise the money to buy snacks for the season." - The clubs are already fundraising, for ex for youth & gov meetings in Harrisburg, etc. There is only so much of a club's time and energy that can be spent on fundraising rather than on the activities the club was organized for.

Questioner said...

And re: making schools pleasant and comfortable for students - you can bet the private and charter schools competing for students are giving some thought to what would be pleasant and comfortable.

amymoore said...

Does anyone know how things are being handled at CAPA which is also being expanded to a 6-12 school? I know that parents were worried about having to share already inadequate practice/performance space at the board hearings. Did they consider the cafeteria or is it able to hold more than Reizenstein?

It will be interesting to see how the gym at Reiz will be used, especially during winter term when there will be h.s. boys and girls basketball and ms boys and girls basketball plus swim teams for both schools. Will afternoon gyms be cancelled on all game days or will they schedule ALL games for after 5?

No, anon10:51 and 3:15, eating lunch at 10 am, although not exactly healthy nor educationally sound, is not a disaster, but is just more more example of the poor treatment of our kids. I can't imagine that very many adults would agree to this in the workplace but our kids have little choice.

amymoore said...

I have another concern which has not been discussed. How will the restrooms in these 6-12 buildings be managed? At the old Schenley and at Reizenstein, several of the restrooms were locked during the day if there was not anyone nearby to monitor them. I sure hope that they find a better solution than that to make sure the young 6th graders are not intimidated in the restrooms by the older high school kids. Lunch at 10 am is an inconvenience; no restrooms available might be considered a hardship.

Mark Rauterkus said...

I do see the connection between free lunch and when it is provided now. Thanks.

Restrooms at IB / Rise-n-shine won't be a factor as there are three wings / houses to the building.

Anonymous said...

Schools like Ellis, Winchester Thurston, and many Catholic schools go from K-12 with only one luchroom but don't seem to be having 10:00 am lunches. Maybe PPS can check how those schools are managing scheduling.

Anonymous said...

So if the fundraising option won't work and the schools won't make the effort of asking others, then we do "we" as parents step up and do something about it? When do "we" take the next step and fundraise for them? Or make the ask ourselves?

Questioner said...

Is this something that the PSCC would want to handle- a project for parents to make healthy snacks available for students staying on for activities, sports practice, extra help, etc?

amymoore said...

At our last PSCC meeting in May, Mrs. Facaros said that they would try to make snacks available for students staying after school. I do not know if she will be able to or where the funds will come from. I guess we will see in a few weeks.