Oakland High School students struggle with short lunch hours

With long lines and a closed campus policy, Oakland students state that they only really get about 10 to 15 minutes to eat.

Dec. 5—It's lunchtime at Oakland High School in Oakland, Calif., and that means fence hoppers. Several kids wear mischievous grins as they speedily scale a 12-foot-high metal perimeter.

In theory, anyway, Oakland High is a "closed campus." That's done in the interest of safety and security and to cut down on school-skipping. It means kids can't leave during school hours without parental consent, especially at lunchtime. But it doesn't stop several students from breaking out.

Inside the cafeteria the lines are long, and complaints about the food are as plentiful as the fence jumpers.

Today's lunch is "popcorn chicken," potatoes and tamales. A plastic bowl with little packets of carrot sticks looks lonely.