Students’ voices in what we eat

Students should have a say in what the cafeteria serves


Ravali Vallurupalli / Talon

Over 2 years ago, the high school transitioned into distance learning. The taste of school lunches that once lingered in students’ mouths was nothing but a faint memory of sugary confections and savory meals. 

Pretzels, scrambled eggs, tater tots, cinnamon rolls, smoothie bowls, bagels, pizza bagels. We are not asking for all of these luxuries. However, it would be nice if we could make an understanding somewhere in the middle. When something gets added to the meals, students should get a vote as to whether or not that meal satisfies them.

Currently, students’ only choice, if any, is whether they want turkey/chicken or tofu. What about the choice of apple chew or banana chew? Potato burrito or bean burrito? Do students even like some of the options? The school should give students the opportunity to express what they do and do not like. 

Although the food in the cafeteria should be chosen by the kids, the cafeteria staff has to prepare each meal. While having to deal with a load of kids grabbing food every day, they also have to create exceptional meals which must include a healthy variety. There will always be meals that do not agree with every student’s appetite, but the cafeteria staff tries their best with the resources they have. What tends to occur, though, is students ignore the hard work and only judge the food in front of them.  

The school must also take into consideration the higher number of students getting lunches and the cost of ingredients and certain foods. Since the lunches are free this year, our school has to deal with the budget to get nutritious and tasty food. 

While taking into account what the cafeteria staff have to go through, everything would be much easier if we had more freedom to choose the lunches. More of the burden and responsibility would fall on the students, who want a choice in what they eat while allowing the staff to help students to a greater capacity. A place where students could make suggestions and comments about the meals would be beneficial to not only the students but also the staff.