Chicago school bans lunches from home, forces kids to eat cafeteria food

Students in Chicago are being forced to choke down the unappetizing food pictured above because packed lunches from home have been entirely banned in their school.

On first glance, you might think it’s a liability issue (maybe some kid gets packed a steak and a knife) or even part of the peanut allergy panic. No, it seems it’s just that the school thinks parents and kids can’t be trusted to pick healthy lunches. Little Village Academy Principal Elsa Carmona is unapologetic:

“Nutrition wise, it is better for the children to eat at the school,” Carmona said. “It’s about the nutrition and the excellent quality food that they are able to serve (in the lunchroom). It’s milk versus a Coke. But with allergies and any medical issue, of course, we would make an exception.”

Of course, if families don’t qualify for free or subsidized lunches, the mandate comes at a hefty cost for food many of the kids discard without even consuming- $2.25 a day, or about $45 a month. Which, if your kid is picky and going hungry, probably is even more galling.

Do you think this kind of intervention is acceptable, or does it force a very rigid “solution” onto families where a problem may not even exist?