Streams

Lunch Time Already? How Early School Lunches Affect Your Child

Thursday, February 13, 2014

WNYC Data Reporter Coulter Jones and New York Daily News reporter Ben Chapman look at what the data tells us about too-early school lunch times and how they can affect students' performances.

Guests:

Ben Chapman and Coulter Jones

Comments [19]

Sarah from Upper West Side

Early lunches long predated the Bloomberg administration. There were years when teachers requested that kids pack snacks so they could make it through the long post-lunch afternoons.

There are many good things about the mini-school /school within a school options - the downside is that scheduling can be hellacious for administrators.

I'm sort of surprised that this issue is big news now. I remember my kids eating lunch at absurdly early times 17 years ago.

Feb. 13 2014 02:46 PM
Liz from Brooklyn

It is absurd that kids eat so early.

Feb. 13 2014 02:04 PM
alex from brooklyn

I'm writing with no intention to be disrespectful. I don't know the name of the lady who is sitting in for Brian Lehrer today but her voice is so forced and so grating I've turned my radio off. Brian Lehrer, Leonard Lopate, Terry Gross all have unforced, natural voices and their interest in whomever they are talking to is evident. I so enjoy Brian and Leonard so would appreciate that you either consider someone else with a less forced voice as a sit-in when they're absent or - again - no disrespect - suggest to this lady that she take voice lessons. Unfortunately in radio there is only the sound and voice. I hope you take this in the constructive manner I intend. Thank you

Feb. 13 2014 11:40 AM
Faith Steinberg from NYC

This disgraceful situation fits the upshot of Bloomberg's administration. The former Mayor had a contempt for the working class and it trickled down to the children. He wasn't even aware of it - it's his mindset. He would give tax breaks for sport's stadium's, these profit-making enterprises, tear down affordable housing and destroy parks to build sport's arenas (Yankee Stadium, Barclay Center) appoint a socialite as Chancellor of the B of E. with no caring or awareness of his policies. Hopefully our new Mayor will rectify these callous deeds.

Feb. 13 2014 11:32 AM
Jim B from Queens

I wish we could find a way to incorporate lunch into the curriculum. Food is the biggest challenge I face as an adult. Requiring math, reading, research, social skills. Shopping, budget, nutrition, flavor, enjoyment, meal planning, pantry management, health. It is the part of our budget that gets squeezed first when money is tight but has maybe the biggest effect on quality of life. The daily question of what to do for lunch changes the equation of ever other choice in my life. But I was taught nothing about food in school.

Feb. 13 2014 11:20 AM

Re: comment from MikeInBrklyn from Clinton Hill

Snow removal has been an issue since Bloomberg took office.
People in Albany and elsewhere are amazed at how incompetent this city is with snow removal.

It is a separate issue, but an important one. It affects more than just the schools. In response to the person who said we should just respond to the changing climate: one or two or three snow days a year has been normal for decades. I went to school in the NYC system during the '60s and '70s. It was normal to have snow days when it was difficult or impossible or questionable or dangerous. And that was when the city did a decent job of handling snow.

Mayor deBlasio has 20 years of Guiliani/Bloomberg to clean up.

Feb. 13 2014 11:14 AM
Bob from Westchester

Please don't conflate the early lunch issue with school facility sharing. My 3 kids all had the lunch scheduled before 11am at several times in middle school and high school in both public and Catholic schools, none of which shared facilities. It's a question of scheduling for the benefit and convenience of the staff, not the kids.

Feb. 13 2014 11:14 AM

How about back to the failure to close schools today?
Mayor deBlasio has been in office just over a month. He is still learning where the paper clips are.
Carmen Farina has a good history, but this does not bode well.

Such storms have occurred before. It was clear, both in those cases and in this one, that even if the commute to school is possible, the RETURN would be impossible or dangerous for school buses and dangerous for those on foot. In the past, that danger was precluded by the early decision to close -- to place the safety of students and teachers over the desire to place one more notch on the City's belt for number of school days held.

At least one private school I know of called staff and parents this morning at 5:00 AM after its own decision to make the right decision.

It is clear there is one reason for this: to demonstrate that the city school system has "conducted school" for a certain number of days. The safety of students and staff takes a back seat.

Lunch has been going on this way for decades. The era of Guliani/Bloomberg is over. The new administration should have taken the bull by the horns aggressively in all areas.

Very disappointing.

Feb. 13 2014 11:05 AM

How about back to the failure to close schools today?
Mayor deBlasio has been in office just over a month. He is still learning where the paper clips are.
Carmen Farina has a good history, but this does not bode well.

Such storms have occurred before. It was clear, both in those cases and in this one, that even if the commute to school is possible, the RETURN would be impossible or dangerous for school buses and dangerous for those on foot. In the past, that danger was precluded by the early decision to close -- to place the safety of students and teachers over the desire to place one more notch on the City's belt for number of school days held.

At least one private school I know of called staff and parents this morning at 5:00 AM after its own decision to make the right decision.

It is clear there is one reason for this: to demonstrate that the city school system has "conducted school" for a certain number of days. The safety of students and staff takes a back seat.

Lunch has been going on this way for decades. The era of Guliani/Bloomberg is over. The new administration should have taken the bull by the horns aggressively in all areas.

Very disappointing.

Feb. 13 2014 11:04 AM
jen from manhattan

The conversation is failing to take into account when children begin their day and typically eat breakfast. If a child eats breakfast at 7 am then lunch at 10:45 doesn't sound like a bad idea. They could have an afternoon snack. Or the chidlren could have a morning snack and a later lunch, but that would cost the schools more to provide.

Feb. 13 2014 11:03 AM
MikeInBrklyn from Clinton Hill

Stop whining!! Send the little brats and their parents up to Buffalo or Canada. If every time it snowed there they closed the schools, kids would be attending classes in the middle of summer. And I bet you the whiners would be screaming about having their brats attending class in the summer heat. Pleaaazzze!

Maybe instead of crying about schools being open, these parents should implore municipal administrations to learn from the Buffalo's and Ontario's how to effectively manage snow emergencies.

Feb. 13 2014 11:02 AM
Rachel from Bronx

Theodor Roosevelt HS is not in the "South" Bronx.

Also co-locating is a very innocuous term, it is really a euphemism for packing kids in like sardines.

Feb. 13 2014 11:01 AM
pliny from soho

boy if you could only make this racial
it would really be perfect

Feb. 13 2014 11:01 AM
Larry from Brooklyn

The potential negative outcomes here all sound like anecdotes to me. What actual research is there (and who says noon is optimal)? Don't students start class ridiculously early? Maybe 11 AM is OK in that context. This seems like a weak discussion.

Feb. 13 2014 11:00 AM

Kids should be in school more not less

Lunch too early have an afternoon snack.

Feb. 13 2014 11:00 AM
Peg

Why do all the separate schools housed in the same building HAVE TO eat at different times?

Feb. 13 2014 11:00 AM
Capper from Queens

As a parent whose 7 year old attends public school, I think it's ridiculous that kids are eating at 10:45 in the morning. I'm glad this is an issue that has come up becuase this needs to change!

Feb. 13 2014 10:58 AM
J from Brooklyn

Why you cannot cancel school: Climate change is making large snowfalls increasingly common. This is the new normal. Better get used to it, at least for the next few decades.

Or reverse the school year to avoid winter semesters.

Feb. 13 2014 10:57 AM
Jonathan Epner from Bronx

Schools are open so kids can eat breakfast and lunch:

http://www.businessinsider.com/why-nyc-doesnt-cancel-school-in-snow-2014-2

Feb. 13 2014 10:57 AM

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