NYC student makes film about "disgusting" school lunch

Student says descriptions of food didn't match what he was served.

When most kids don’t like their soggy school lunch food, they complain about it. Not so for one fourth-grader. Zachary Maxwell, a student at Public School 130 in Little Italy, decided last year to cook up a film documenting the less-than-appetizing grub served on white styrofoam trays.

He found it to be a far cry from the nutritious noshes the Education Department has recently boasted about preparing in public schools across the city.

“It sounded like the food was coming from the most delicious restaurant,” said the 11-year-old, now in fifth grade. “Like, ‘golden crispy chicken nuggets and fresh braised collards.’ But some of it kind of looked disgusting.” Instead, Zachary said, he got “burned chicken nuggets with no green beans, no vegetables.”

So the filmmaker turned his thoughts about food into food for thought in his 20-minute movie, “Yuck: A 4th Grader’s Short Documentary About School Lunch,” which will be screened Friday at the Manhattan Film Festival.

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
email

Communication is key, and [managers] are busy too. One tip I picked up from another director was to label my subject line with the header “action,” “information” or “response” followed by a brief description of the email contents. That way they can filter through their inboxes during their busy days to know which emails need their attention immediately and which they can save to read later.

Ideas and Innovation
salmon and yogurt

With all the hype around probiotics, we decided to create a daily dish that incorporates probiotics in addition to prebiotics. You rarely hear about prebiotics, and this was a great way to highlight how the two work synergistically to maintain a healthy gut. Our chefs have developed menu items such as roasted salmon with yogurt and mint vinaigrette, kale and quinoa salad with warm maple dressing, and leek soup with prickled cucumbers, to name a few.

Industry News & Opinion

Buckeye Union High School District in Buckeye, Ariz., has introduced monthly chef demos to encourage students to try different foods as well as healthy eating habits, AZ Family reports.

Each month, chefs conduct a lunchtime demo in the cafeteria at the district’s three high schools. After viewing the demo, students are then encouraged to sample some of the dish that was prepared.

The demos were introduced just after each of the cafeterias were renovated with a food court-style layout, allowing students to select from a variety of options during lunch.

Read the full...

Industry News & Opinion

Boston Public Schools is the latest district to join the Urban School Food Alliance, a nonprofit group that aims to help districts provide high-quality student meals while keeping costs down.

With the addition of Boston, the Alliance includes 11 schools and says it now reaches nearly 3.7 million students. The group has grown its total purchasing power to $831 million in food and supplies as it continues to increase its membership.

“Thanks to support from the Kendall Foundation, Boston’s membership in the Alliance will serve our mission of increasing access to locally and...

FSD Resources