Assessing the Impact of School Breakfast
Are children enrolled in public schools getting the adequate nutrition needed to fuel their day? According to findings from recent research, those school breakfasts that many parents count on to nourish their child are failing at doing this. As schools look for more ways to save money it is often food choices that go first. Cuts have left budgets tight and school systems attempting to find resolutions that work for everyone. But, in the end it seems as if it is the children that will pay.
A Typical School Breakfast
Students who eat a breakfast in the morning can think clearly, are more positive and attentive and are less distracted those students who do not. However, what is the school breakfast menu look like? Is it enough to provide those carbs and nutrients the body needs to get it started? School breakfast menus vary from city and state, but typically the items on those menus aren’t so pleasing.
- Pop tarts
- White bread with melted cheese
- Fruit & Grain Bar
- Toast w/Jelly (2 Slices)
- Cinnamon Roll
Although schools do serve eggs, oatmeal, cereal and other breakfast items it is the above choices, and similar, that seem to make up the greatest part of the menu on most days of the week.
More Bad News for School Breakfasts
In addition to a lack of nutrients in these breakfasts oftentimes the portions served are not enough. Again this is all in an attempt to make cuts and save money for the school budget. However, it also means our children are not getting enough to eat, even with a lunch being served later in the day. Inadequate amounts of the wrong foods are a recipe for disaster, especially for children, and their ability to learn at their best may very well be affected.
Across the United States school breakfast menus are continuing to disappoint parent after parent. They are not nutritious, nor are they filling. If a breakfast won’t fill up an elementary student they’ll sure do nothing for older kids. But schools say it is cuts like this that are necessary to provide students with the proper education. However, it seems as if there is more that could be done. Even minor changes could mean big improvements. It is important that children earn their education, but they need to do it when they are at their best and working on a full stomach with the right nutrients.