Healthy Habits

amani safadi

Newer, tougher snack regulations have students buzzing.

Lawrence schools are no longer allowed to sell carbonated beverages or those with high sugar content before 2 p.m. This effects sales at the Bird’s Nest, lunchroom, or in any of the vending machines.

As far as snacks, the school has to carry healthy items that can have a maximum of 200 calories, a maximum of eight grams of fat and a maximum of eight grams of sugar. The main rule is if school’s want to sell one unhealthy item, they have to have one healthy item available according to Bird’s Nest adviser Phil Roth.

Some students say this new regulation will not change their eating habits.

“It will probably not affect me as much because I don’t necessarily eat those kind of things,” junior Hana Arch said. ”Nothing will really change about my everyday lunch at school.”

Last year the school was allowed to sell as much soda and snack food as they wanted. Students were also allowed to eat and drink soda in classrooms. This year even the teachers aren’t allowed to have soda on their desks.

“The rule for teachers states that any place that students have access too has to be free from carbonated beverages,” principal Ed West said.

The main reason for all these changes is mainly because the federal government pays for school lunches. If they were to come to the school and find out the snack policy wasn’t changed then the school would end up losing the two million we would normally get to pay for school lunches according to West.

Many students are wondering why the school thinks this is a good regulation.

“It’s part of the government’s policy towards improving the health of students, which means they are mostly worried about childhood obesity,” Roth said.

Many students feel the new snack policy is unfair.

“I don’t think [childhood obesity] is a very good reason for cutting soda and snacks because it’s the students choice to eat it, and if it makes them obese then it’s there choice,” junior Guin Toalson said.

Many sophomores who were looking forward to the old snack policy felt cheated.

”I can imagine the snack policy was pretty awesome just being able to eat whenever you want, [but] I can understand that people might not want snacks all the time because it can be disrupting,” sophomore Sam Boatright said.

Next year the snack policy will be even more restrictive. The school will not be allowed to sell any snacks or soda throughout the whole school.