Finally, progress is being made on the junk food front in public schools located in my backyard. Yesterday, the Illinois State Board of Education enacted a junk food ban in elementary and middle schools.
The measure, prohibiting the sale of chips, soft drinks and candy before and during the school day for children up to the eighth grade, goes into effect this fall. And it came despite concerns from cash-strapped schools that vending machine sales added to the bottom line.
On the down side, high schools, included in the original proposal, were exempted from the state’s new junk food rules. For now, anyway…
One board member voted against the proposal because he believed local school districts deserved to make their own decision about a junk food ban. Left alone, however, school administrators would say all the right things, but do absolutely nothing, just like the U.S. Department of Agriculture that refuses to enforce its own competitive foods rules.
Chicago Sun-Times March 17, 2006