Schools everywhere are making radical changes, and I mean RADICAL. Did you know that at schools across the nation, parents are not allowed to bring cupcakes on their kids' birthday? WHAAT? It's true. There are two completely different scenarios on this topic.
Scenario 1- Parents can't bring HOMEMADE cupcakes on your children's birthday. They can only bring store bought cupcakes because THEN the school knows all the ingredients and whether or not the person baking them has sense enough to fully bake them and not give everyone salmonella. Really. That's the reason. It's true. I've seen it IN WRITING. So tell me this, so many parents are clueless these days that they're not allowed to bake cupcakes for school BUT they are allowed to raise children? Are we completely losing it in this country? People can't be entrusted with CUPCAKES but they can be entrusted with precious, vulnerable children???
Scenario 2- Parents can't bring cupcakes on their child's birthday because it's unhealthy and encourages sugary eating habits. Are you serious? Wait, I'm doing a quick google here. Here's some information from the Institute of Medicine's website. First of all, some 9 million children over the age of 6 are obese. (so those clueless parents mentioned above are managing to cook SOMETHING) And in the last 30 years, the rate of obesity in American children has DOUBLED. Here are some of the reasons cited.
Causes of Childhood Obesity
The rise in childhood obesity is due to complex interactions
across a number of relevant social, environmental,
and policy contexts that influence eating and physical
activity. Over decades, these have collectively created an
adverse environment for maintaining a healthy weight.
This environment is characterized by:
• urban and suburban designs that discourage walking
and other physical activities;
• pressures on families to minimize food costs, acquisition
and preparation time, resulting in frequent consumption
of convenience foods that are high in calories and fat;
• reduced access and affordability in some communities
to fruits, vegetables, and other nutritious foods;
• decreased opportunities for physical activity at school,
after school, and reduced walking or biking to and from
• competition for leisure time that was once spent playing
outdoors with sedentary screen time including watching
television or playing computer and video games.
Do you see cupcakes on that list? Do you see birthdays on that list? What stands out to me is the need for physical activity. In all those memos from schools about NO CUPCAKES, could there maybe be a memo to the teachers about recess? That's what's vanishing.
Okay, off my soapbox. Today is my son's 9th birthday. I'll soon be bringing a feast of carrot sticks to celebrate at school, but I don't know how the hell I'll get a candle to stick in one. Maybe a little icing....
No, our school is actually pretty cool about this stuff. We're still okay with obesity in eastern North Carolina, it seems. But it's only a matter of time. Interesting stuff.
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