School lunch mandates trump academic mandates?

March 5, 2013 0 Comments

Outrage over federal mandates dictating what schools should serve to students for lunch is gaining media exposure. While this is an issue deserving attention, where is the outrage over the brain food are children are being served in the form of the Common Core Standards?

According to Fox News, new school lunch regulations placed on school districts by federal mandate are too expensive and an over-reach of federal power. In the article, the following points are made:

The American Action Forum estimates the regulations, which include caps on serving sizes and calorie counts, will cost schools $127 million and require more than 926,000 hours of paperwork.

Sam Batkins, director of regulatory policy at the institute, says the proposals amount to yet another unfunded federal mandate for state and local governments, “at a time when many of their budgets are still struggling.”

Has anyone at Fox News given considerable weight to the new Common Core standards which are dictating what are children are served in the form of math and English instruction? It seems far more pertinent to be concern with the junk being shoveled into the minds of our youth than what they are served for lunch. The unfunded mandate on the states to comply with the new forced requirements hovers at 16 billion dollars and an unpredictable number of hours on paperwork.

Considering that the federal government has made adoption of the one-size-fits-all standards and federally funded student test a requirement for certain grant funds and waivers should motivate journalists like a red flag being waived before a bull. Where are the conservative journalists like Hannity or O’Reilly? Where’s the fight to save our country from a centrally controlled system of education based on national standards and a high-stakes federally funded student test? Does nobody see the correlation between unfunded mandates in the lunch room and those in the classroom? The new standards require huge costs in textbooks, teacher training, curriculum changes, and unprecedented costs in technology upgrades for school districts to be in compliance. Who will pay for this unfunded mandate? The taxpayer will, as usual.

Just as the children are dumping the new lunches into the garbage uneaten, so will be the fate of the Common Core. After the expense and the continued dumbing down of our students, it will succumb to the same death as other failed educational fads like No Child Left Behind, Whole Language and Outcomes Based Education. Like many bad meals, the Common Core will have a bad after-taste, with a drop in student achievement.


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