Middle Schoolers Protest Unhealthy School Lunches
More than thirty Tivoli students brought their own lunches to school last week as part of a grassroots protest for healthier meal options.
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In a move that would make healthy-lunch advocate Jamie Oliver beam with joy, a group of Tivoli middle school students staged a boycott of the lackluster lunches on offer in the school’s cafeteria last week. Their gripe? Too much repetition and too few healthy options, the Victoria Advocate‘s Kayla Bell reported.
For four days last week, all of Austwell-Tivoli Junior High School’s 32 students brought sack lunches from home in protest.
“We wanted more choice in what was served, as there was a lot of repetition in what was going on. All we wanted was for our voice to be heard and a chance at change,” Mckenzi Simmons, president of the seventh-grade class, told Bell.
The students, who actually learned the term “boycott” during a recent Texas history lesson, sent a letter to their principal, Stephen Maldonado, outlining their demands. “We have tried other solutions before. However, seeing as there has been no change or consideration, we have come to this option. Once again, if we have hurt anyone’s feelings we are sincerely sorry, as it was unintentional,” the letter read.
Last April, some Milby High School students boycotted HISD's repetitive school lunches, Bettina Elias Siegel reported on the Houston Chronicle's school lunch blog, the Lunch Tray. The concerns Milby junior Hector Sanchez outlined to Siegel were similar: “I was thinking about the kind of food they give us ... It’s nasty. The quality is just really bad," Sanchez explained. "I thought, if I want to change something, I have to be doing something."
This issue seems to be front of mind these days. The First Lady, who has been promoting her Healthy Living Campaign, was in Dallas earlier this month, appearing at an event that paired Top Chef contestants with Dallas ISD students for a healthy cooking competition. In fact, her devotion to veggies has become so well known, it was even spoofed on last week's episode of Saturday Night Live: