• Journalism is seeking artwork and writing from talented students to publish HERE! Please see Mrs. Bridges or your language arts teacher for more information.

School Lunches: Friend or Foe?

Emileigh Elwood, Guest Writer

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






School lunch: friend to some, foe to many. Most students have had school lunch at one time or another, but most don’t know why we have it.

In pre-industrial times, people lived close to where they worked or went to school, and  students and workers went home to eat, or packed a lunch if they lived far away. In the second half of the nineteenth century, factories started popping up, and people worked farther from home. Workers were given allotted periods of time to eat, but often didn’t have enough time for travel and meal.

Cafeterias, newfangled industrial feeding lines, seemed to be the solution to the issue. They provided workers with meals a short distance away from the factory where they worked, and this benefit attracted employees and increased productivity. Modern schools modeled after factories started to look at similar programs for feeding students.

In the first decades of the twentieth century, school meals were served to students in America’s larger cities. The meals were carefully crafted to make sure each student received the perfect amount of calories that would maximize his or her learning potential. Because American schoolchildren were the prime subject in the eyes of researchers, nutritionist, and social scientists (which must have been strange for the children), cookbooks began suggesting recipes for school lunches, and parents were told about the connection between nutritious school lunches and academic achievement. Although many research groups and organizations occasionally served school lunch, school lunch wasn’t really a thing.

In 1946, the national school lunch act was developed, with a goal “to serve proper lunches to children who may not otherwise have access to a proper diet”. While this program was a wonderful prospect, it didn’t do much… cafeteria lunches in schools were uncommon until the 1970s. In the 70s, choices of what to eat grew tremendously, with vending machines going into schools, and in the 1990s, salad bars, sub stations, and ethnic specialties continuously allowed for choice.

Present day, cafeterias in schools have the same goal, to provide nutritious, inexpensive meals for students. But as for the controversy over what makes a school lunch good or bad, that still remains a flaming hot debate. And mystery meat is still disgusting.

Navigate Right
Navigate Left
  • School Lunches: Friend or Foe?

    Campus Life

    Taking Singing to Another Level

  • School Lunches: Friend or Foe?

    Campus Life

    Total Eclipse of the Mill

  • School Lunches: Friend or Foe?

    Features

    Invitation to Innovation: New Alliance Academy for Innovation

  • School Lunches: Friend or Foe?

    Features

    Black History Month

  • School Lunches: Friend or Foe?

    Campus Life

    Chorus Craze!

  • School Lunches: Friend or Foe?

    Campus Life

    Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle

  • School Lunches: Friend or Foe?

    Features

    Track: A Sport for Everyone

  • School Lunches: Friend or Foe?

    Campus Life

    Technology: The Good and the Bad

  • School Lunches: Friend or Foe?

    Campus Life

    6th Grade: A Whole New World

  • School Lunches: Friend or Foe?

    Campus Life

    Read Across America Day

School Lunches: Friend or Foe?