USDA to Permanently Loosen Requirements for First Lady's Unpopular School Lunch Program
Parents, teachers and students who have been complaining for the past couple of years about the unappetizing, and unfilling lunches Michelle Obama's signature anti-obesity program has imposed on schools, finally have something to cheer about.
USDA regulators have agreed to relax rules that imposed reductions in calories and portion sizes as part of the law designed to improve school breakfasts and lunches, and ironically called the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010.
The modifications were aimed at limiting fat and salt, reducing portion sizes and increasing fruit and vegetable servings. For kindergarteners through fifth graders, their meals were capped at 650 calories. Sixth through eighth graders were allowed 700 calories per meal, while high schoolers got 850.
Senator John Hoeven of North Dakota and Senator Mark Pryor of Arkansas announced Friday, that the U.S. Department of Agriculture had agreed to loosen those requirements to the National School Lunch and Breakfast Program.
“Today, the USDA made the permanent changes we have been seeking to the School Lunch Program,” Hoeven said. “A one-size-fits-all approach to school lunch left students hungry and school districts frustrated with the additional expense, paperwork and nutritional research necessary to meet federal requirements. These are exactly the changes included in our Sensible School Lunch Act.”
“After hearing from educators, parents, and students, Senator Hoeven and I stepped in to help school districts who were frustrated with the National School Lunch and Breakfast Program’s strict new rules,” Pryor said. “I’m glad the USDA followed our lead and made these much-needed administrative changes that will give our school districts the permanent flexibility they need to keep our kids healthy and successful.”
Susan Ellinger, a school nutrition supervisor in Staunton, VA said the reversal will mean fuller stomachs, and therefore "fewer attendance problems, fewer nurse visits, increased test scores and increased attention."
"When those basic needs are satisfied then other things tend to fall into place and you have fewer issues as well," said Ellinger, as she is glad to see old USDA regulations gone.
The regulations restricted how much meat and grains schools could serve to student, leaving some kids with an empty stomach.
"It's hard to think straight when you're really hungry. The same with our student-athletes, it's hard for them to perform to their full potential if they're not being fed well during the day," said Ellinger.
The rules now allow for larger portions of lean meat and whole grains for each child.
Tammy Bruce promises "this is only the beginning of idiotic and controlling Obama schemes which will be reversed, one way or the other."
From her lips to God's ears.