The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


April 12, 2014

Students give peas a chance

Some Valley districts buck trend of kids trashing healthy lunches

Despite more than 1 million students nationwide skipping out on lunches since the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s new Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act, some Valley schools have not lost any participation in their meal programs.

Officials in the Warrior Run and Lewisburg Area school districts report seeing very little or no decrease in the number of meals served in the past two school years. Shikellamy, in fact, notes a 1 percent increase in participation in the past year.

Students have been observed throwing more of their school meals into the trash in the Line Mountain district, where the number of meals served dropped 12,610 in one year — from 164,413 in 2011-12 to 151,803 in 2012-13.

Participation in Selinsgrove has dropped by about 10 percent in one school year.

“It’s been fluctuating,” said Kevin Oswald, director of food and nutrition services at Selinsgrove and Lewisburg. “The meals look healthy in general, but just because you serve them doesn’t mean they’ll eat them.”

The USDA act, spearheaded by first lady Michelle Obama, requires school districts participating in the National School Breakfast and Lunch programs to phase out white bread this year. It also requires districts to offer students more fruits, vegetables and whole-grain bread and pastas, but in smaller portion sizes and with less calories.

An audit of the act’s nutritional standards released by the Government Accountability Office earlier this month found that 48 of 50 states faced challenges complying with the regulations. A total of 1.086 million students stopped buying school lunches and 321 districts left the National School Lunch Program, according to the report.

Even though there’s been difficulty, Lewisburg Superintendent Mark DiRocco said the act is the right thing to do.

“It’s an adjustment period,” he said. “It will come back around. We should be feeding our students healthy foods and introducing them to vegetables.”

Lewisburg decreased from one year to the next by less than 5 percent, Oswald said.

Shikellamy Superintendent Patrick Kelley said the program is working itself out and the district will continue to comply with federal regulations.

Lunch is stable in the Warrior Run district, but breakfast is down, Superintendent John Kurelja said.

The district will continue to monitor the meal program and serve the food that has a higher acceptance rate, he said.

Districts can opt out of the federal program, but they would lose reimbursement for the meals and funding for students who qualify for free and reduced lunches.


Text Only
  • Official: Air Algerie flight ’probably crashed’

    An Air Algerie flight carrying 116 people from Burkina Faso to Algeria’s capital disappeared from radar early Thursday over northern Mali and “probably crashed,” according to the plane’s owner and government officials in France and Burkina Faso.

    July 24, 2014

  • 1gaza25.jpg Israeli fire hits UN facility in Gaza, killing 15

    Israeli tank shells hit a compound housing a U.N. school in the northern Gaza Strip on Thursday, killing at least 15 people and wounding dozens who were seeking shelter from fierce clashes on the streets outside.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • 1execution.jpg How Arizona, Ohio, Oklahoma, executions went awry

    Since the start of the year, executions in Ohio, Oklahoma and Arizona have gone awry, with inmates gasping for breath as lethal drugs coursed through their bodies.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Today's Editorial: One more job appears at risk

    July 24, 2014

  • Rabbi Conflict in Israel grounds Sunbury rabbi

    TEL AVIV, Israel — While the Israelis and Hamas traded rocket and missile strikes for a 16th day, Rabbi Nina Mandel is struggling to find her way back to Sunbury after the FAA on Wednesday announced that it would extend its ban on travel at Ben-Gurion International Airport for another 24 hours.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Fatal24 Danville woman dies as logging truck crushes car in Valley Township

    DANVILLE — An 84-year-old Danville woman was killed when her car and a logging truck collided Wednesday afternoon at Routes 642 and 54 in Valley Township.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • Docs: Fractures helped save rock victim's life

    DANVILLE — Sharon Budd’s condition is progressing nearly a week after a 13 1/2-hour procedure in which a team of surgeons rebuilt her facial bones and removed a damaged part of her brain, said two Geisinger Health System physicians who are part of that team

    July 24, 2014

  • Magistrate judge sides with Warrior Run

    WILLIAMSPORT — A federal magistrate judge says he agrees with a hearing officer that a Warrior Run student does not need special-education services,

    July 23, 2014

  • Inaugural Lewisburg BrewBQue Musical Festival is Saturday

    LEWISBURG — Not a beer fan? Not a problem. This Saturday’s inaugural Lewisburg BrewBQue Musical Festival, taking place from 2 to 6 p.m. on Market Street from Sixth Street to the Susquehanna River, welcomes brew lovers, barbecue fans, dancers in the street and little tykes alike with an array of events and offerings, organizers said.

    July 23, 2014

  • Decision coming on police shooting of city man

    SUNBURY — Brad Hare, the city’s former acting police chief, will learn by Friday whether he was justified in shooting a city man earlier this month, Northumberland County District Attorney Ann Targonski said Wednesday.

    July 23, 2014

The Daily Marquee

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.