Wellness Policy discussions continue

Last month, the administration introduced a new Wellness Policy that includes a Regulation limiting the food allowed in the classroom.  This is designed to protect students with severe and life-threatening allergies, and built off of the current building policies the elementary principals had enacted.

After the introduction of this topic, the board asked the administration to gather more information from building administrators, teachers and parents about their thoughts and needs.  The revised policy & regulation, reflecting input from these groups, was read last night.

The policy, which is required by the state, will reflect language specifically outlined by the law.  This is general and outlines goals for nutrition education, physical activity, other school-based activities designed to promote wellness, and nutrition.  The regulation, which is district-specific and outlines how our district will execute against the policy, is more detailed.

The regulation currently includes the following points:

  • Snacks for individual students in elementary classrooms must be off the Milford School District’s approved snack list.  Snacks in the 7-12 grade levels may only be consumed in areas designed for food consumption.  Snacks off the list are permitted for individual students because of IEP or health needs, and will be consumed in the nurse’s office.
  • Teachers may use snacks or instructional purposes, following certain approval processes and guidelines.  Teachers may not use candy or other food items as a reward for student achievement.  Teachers may eat at their desks but need to take proper precautions to clean areas where food has been consumed.
  • For birthdays and other individual celebrations, parents may bring special food for their child only, to be served only at lunchtime in the cafeteria; they may not bring in a food treat for other students, but may bring non-food items, if desired.
  • Parties involving food in the elementaries may take place twice a year in the classrooms, based on the principal’s judgment.  Food must be off the approved list.
  • The approved list for any grade level may be adjusted based on specific allergies or issues within that grade level.
  • After school activities are not subject to these requirements.  Food should be consumed at times to insure rooms are cleaned & sanitized prior to the next school day.
  • Food eaten before school will be served in the cafeteria, unless the principal and nurse make an exception.

2 Responses to “Wellness Policy discussions continue”

  1. Wendy Veysey Says:

    Hey Andrea,
    Wow, this all seems so overboard! A teacher knows his/her students and would be responsible if they had a student who had allergies. Teachers can’t give candy as an incentive? Parents can’t bring in cupcakes for the class for their kid’s birthday? This just seems like way too much government interference!

    • andreabrady Says:

      Hi Wendy,
      It’s actually the principals who brought the issue up, they have had enough problems that they felt they needed a strict “no food that is not labeled” policy this year at the elementaries. What’s really surprising is that most of the input we’ve gotten has been either supportive of the policy or neutral – very few people who I’ve heard from have been upset about it, and the discussion groups the administration has had with building administrators, teachers & parents have shown the same thing. The policy ended up being written from their input, and is stricter than what we discussed last month in several areas.

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