My husband and I went to excellent elementary and secondary schools and then we graduated from college. Although we both have had no formal education or training in nutrition, we have a basic grasp of healthy food and how to nourish our bodies and those of our littlest family member too.
We would be considered “middle class” by most Americans, but if you compare us to the rest of the world, we are in the top 3-5% of income worldwide and our standard of living is high (we have all basic necessities met as well as lots of fun extras). Consider that half of the world’s population subsists on less than $1 per day and you get really happy about your life if you live in America.
Through my “middle class” eyes, some of the meals offered to the children at my school make me wonder, but then again I have no training in nutrition (just an interest). All I can say is that I wouldn’t want my toddler eating the school lunches. Lucky for us because of our socio-economic status we can make sure that our little one gets the best possible food either at the best possible school or through meals we pack for him at home.
Some have asked what the kids think of the meals. Well, they always try to say something positive about the food. I hear “good” or “great.” I’m thinking that if they didn’t like it, they just don’t answer. Overall, none of the kids want to sit around and discuss their lunches. I don’t pry because I know that for some, the school lunch is their best (or only) meal of the day.
What do they know about food? Can they have an opinion if they can’t compare the meal to anything? For example, at different times over this past weekend I prepared catfish, edamame, swiss chard, rice, rolls, avocado, eggs, sausage, and bacon for my family for various meals.
Socio-economic status makes it hard for these kids to experience food in the way that “rich” people like us get to. So when these students are given food, they just say “thank you.”