A Healthy School Lunch

Uploaded by edutopia on 27.07.2010

>>Narrator: Childhood obesity
and related health problems have been rising at an alarming rate
across the country due in part to the food choices kids have at school.
>>Bonnie: You see things like frozen pizza, fries, things that have a lot
of preservatives, things that have been processed.
We don't do any of that.
>>Narrator: In some schools, like the Martin Luther King Middle School
in Berkeley, California, parents, teachers, administrators,
and food-service providers are demanding better-quality food
for their children.
>>Bonnie: The Berkeley Unified school-lunch program started years
ago with a number of families who were really concerned
about what was happening in the public-school cafeterias.
>>Narrator: 39 percent of students
in the Berkeley Unified School District receive free
or reduced lunch.
Including overhead, the food program spends an average of 4 dollars
and 50 cents per lunch, well above the national average
of 2 dollars and 91 cents.
The program is able to make up the difference and thrive with grants.
>>Bonnie: There are a lot of people and there are a lot of organizations
that are invested in children eating healthy.
We applied for grants for equipment, ovens, stoves,
retherms, all sorts of things.
The money is there.
>>This is soy, and if you have the right mixture, the right blends
of seasonings and sauce, everything, they love it.
>>Narrator: Martin Luther King Middle School also runs the nationally
recognized Edible Schoolyard program,
where students get hands-on experience
in their organic garden and kitchen classroom.
>>Now, where do you think this came from?
>>All: Garden.
>>Right out there.
>>Narrator: In this integrated learning environment,
teachers incorporate gardening and food preparation into lessons
in science, mathematics...
>>Woman: If it calls for one-and-a-half cups of cooked pumpkin
and we're doubling the recipe, then how much do we need?
>>Narrator: ...history, ecology, and culture.
>>See, just making it hot, just toasting it,
gives it a different flavor.
>>Narrator: Students learn about the connection
between their everyday food choices and the health of the community,
the environment, and themselves.
>>Alice: This is a delicious revolution that we're talking about.
This isn't hard to do.
If they grow it, they cook it, they want to eat it.
>>Bonnie: Our kids who participate
in the garden cooking classes eat three times more vegetables and fruit
than kids who do not, and so the proof is in the pudding, as they say.
Now we're going to bring it right over here.
>>Narrator: Along with lots of veggies and fruits,
King Middle serves up kid favorites like pizza and mac and cheese.
But here, there is a nutritious twist on foods kids love.
>>Bonnie: We make our macaroni and cheese here fresh.
We boil 300 pounds of pasta to do that.
We make a low-fat cheese sauce with fresh cheese and Organic Valley milk.
It's completely healthy.
It is not processed.
It is sustainable.
It is local.
It's something that anybody can do, and the kids absolutely love it.
>>Caleb: I think that King is setting a good example for other schools
to have a more healthier lifestyle.
Like, the healthy food actually can taste good.
I mean, I really enjoy the food here.
>>Bonnie: To replicate this program, it takes a community
that demands real food that is healthy, nutritious, and sustainable
in their communities, and they have to stand up for it and they have
to stand up and make a lot of noise about it.
>>Narrator: For more information on what works
in public education, go to Edutopia.org.