PARENTS

Schools Ban 'Unhealthy' Cake Sales

08/10/2009 08:39 | Updated 22 May 2015

Fairy cakes, cupcakes, any type of cakes are big money spinners for a lot of schools, my children's included, but some are now banning them because they are unhealthy.

However, before you start panicking, the schools in question are in America. Phew. The New York City Department of Education have stopped the sales during school hours because, apparently, the children are too fat.

I'm actually surprised this hasn't happened in our schools. In the summer I held one, with lots of help from my friends, to raise money for the school gardening club which is now £120 richer than it would have been thanks to quite a few buns.

It will ultimately be the children who suffer from this ban, and not because they can't fill up with fairy cakes before tea time.

Students at La Guardia High School told the New York Times they had lots of cake sales a month. One basketball player said without them, they won't be able to buy a new scoreboard.

An assistant principal at the school, John Sommers, said the cake sales could net as much as $500 profit in one day. These should be replaced, according to the Department of Education, with something more active like sponsored walks.

I know schools in the UK have a hard enough time anyway trying to raise enough funds to pay for extras like trips out, visiting theatre groups and in some cases, playground equipment and I'd imagine it's the same everywhere.

To ban a fund raiser that is easy to hold and is worthwhile to do so seems ridiculous.

New York Mayor Michael R Bloomberg, who is focusing on public health and education, is changing the food on offer in schools as part of his efforts to reduce salt, unwanted additives and trans fats in diets.

However, as the Times points out, the regulations don't take into account things like bringing in cakes for classmates to celebrate birthdays. Exceptions to the new ruling are parent-teacher groups who are allowed to hold one sale a month after lunch. Children can also hold sales after 6pm, when presumably most have gone home.

Surely a compromise could be reached? Healthier cakes on offer perhaps or more wholesome food available in school and no vending machines?

If children are getting overweight it might be for several reasons: lack of exercise, poor diet generally or maybe food is being used for emotional reasons.

Banning cake sales does seem a little heavy handed. What do you think - does your school hold them and are you happy about that?

Source: Parentdish

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