CRESCENT SPRINGS, Ky. – A Kentucky school is trying to sweeten the school lunch deal by offering kids ice cream.
Like many schools, Saint Joseph School is grappling with “healthy” changes to the National School Lunch Program that were championed by first lady Michelle Obama.
Saying “it is somewhat difficult at times to make ends meet,” the school will now be selling the treat to students who buy a hot lunch.
“Last year the school lunch programs in the Catholic Schools in the area were taken over by the diocese. The diocese provides the menus for the month, and while we may switch days around, we must use the specific menus we are given. We must also abide by the nutritional guidelines as provided by the federal government within the last few years. There are less students who purchase lunch due to some of these guidelines,” Principal Cathy Stover writes in a letter to parents.
“As the result of the reduction in student lunches, it is somewhat difficult at times to make ends meet. Other diocesan schools are finding themselves in the same situation. It has been suggested to the schools that we add ice cream to make up the difference.”
Even that might not persuade some students to eat the “healthy” lunches.
“She forgoes things like chicken alfredo and grilled chicken, brown rice and broccoli,” parent Kelly Bowman tells Fox 19.
Until the lunches themselves change, Bowman’s daughter won’t be a customer.
Meanwhile, other schools – including nearby Fort Thomas Independent Schools – have dropped the federal lunch program and are not looking back.
“The students were not liking the food,” Fort Thomas food service director Gina Sawma says.
Her district became one of 574 districts that dropped the program after Michelle Obama’s restrictions were implemented.
Now, “The tables are full and the kids are eating. They’re happy,” according to Sawma.
New Hampshire’s Salem High School dropped the federal rules in November and is already seeing the benefits.
“We’re no longer following the required federal guidelines, although we are continuing to fund the free and reduced lunches at the high school,” Superintendent Michael Delahanty tells the Union Leader.
“The reason that we wanted to no longer follow the guidelines is because fundamentally, the students and staff were just not eating the food that was prepared. That was primarily because