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 Post subject: School Lunches
PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 4:48 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 7:40 pm
Posts: 226
Location: surrey
How much does everyone pay for secondary school lunches??

I guess I didn't think - here he is, for the first time, with money to burn on a smartcard at school, instead of me having paid up front and there being no snacks at break (as in primary).

I need to have others to compare with. I think, if he continues with his spending regime, I will be forking out £3 or £4 a day!!

I have said no more snacks (I will send him with something) and no more muffins. This all comes down to the fact that the queues for hot meals are too long and he sticks with baguettes and then gets hungry.

I do have difficulty getting him to eat a decent breakfast, which I know compounds the hunger problem.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 5:07 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2008 9:26 pm
Posts: 553
Hi Melinda
I think the problems with the lunches at Sutton is a real issue. The canteen is too small, the food relatively expensive and the queues too long. When my eldest started there wasn't even a canteen for a year.
I have finally arrived at a compromise that seems to suit us all. A main course at Sutton should be between 2 and 3 pounds and this was what we were paying up front for school dinners at our junior school. I give each of my boys £15 per week for their school food, but let them know that if they make their own lunch they can keep the rest of the money. They get no pocket money, phone top-ups or anything else. I make sure we have a good supply of healthy snacks etc, but I won't make their lunch as feel I'm too busy to add that to everything else.
They are highly motivated to sort their own lunch out, which I insist has a healthy balance and buy the odd lunch or snack from school and I get no hassle about food/money.
I know I am paying twice, but it makes life easier for me and means lunch is sorted and no hassle about pocket money.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 5:11 pm 
Surreymum - I think this is an excellent idea, though mine are at boarding school so I can't implement it! :roll:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 6:43 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 7:40 pm
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Location: surrey
Interesting idea and I might approach my son about it. I do think however that if he made his own lunch he would eat honey sandwiches everyday!!
I will mention the keeping of the money which might spark some interest, but do you not use the smartcard to pay for food? Can you actually pay with cash at the school? I assumed not.

I always have healthy snacks around as he grazes constantly. I will be sending him with a snack for break from now on.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 6:57 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2008 9:26 pm
Posts: 553
Yes they can use cash.
We have clear cut rules about what goes in sandwiches and taking fruit etc.
They still buy some junk, but they run around so much I don't think it's a major problem.
We always have a proper meal in the evening.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 8:05 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 05, 2008 11:58 am
Posts: 181
My son's school charge a special price of £2.00 for the main meal of the day with veggies and a pudding. Add a drink and it would be around £2.60. If they buy more snacky things like paninis or jacket potatoes and then add a pot of fruit or a pudding and also a drink then you start to get into the £3 - £4 range. They have a daily limit on their smart cards of £5.

However, the queues are so long that my son prefers to take a packed lunch and I've never actually worked out how much that costs me to make but I imagine it's probably over £2.00.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 9:04 pm 
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Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2007 8:55 pm
Posts: 851
Location: Bexley
Melinda - there's bound to be a novelty value in having money to spend on what he wants. I found when my eldest started grammar he was getting through £2-3 a day, even with a packed lunch. He developed a serious bacon roll habit (breakfast in the canteen) and his waistline started to expand alarmingly! However, once the novelty wore off, he settled into a fairly acceptable routine. He takes a packed lunch which he eats at mid-morning break and then buys one or two other things at school. I like him to have £3 in his pocket and I keep this topped up but some days he won't spend anything, others just a £1 or two. Now his brother has started at the same school and is coming home with tales of pizza, pasta pots, muffins, milk shakes etc etc :roll: and I'm just hoping he will calm down too!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Sep 12, 2008 9:51 pm 
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Joined: Fri Mar 07, 2008 7:40 pm
Posts: 226
Location: surrey
Yes, it may be a novelty thing, he can use cash so I shall have to think what the best route is.
I don't think I will worry about an expanding waistline as he never stops, takes the bus and walks home with his extremely heavy bag on his back - I am trying to train him NOT to bring every text book home if not required -maybe another subject to discuss!!
Thanks for the input. I guess we all suffered in some way during our childhood over school dinners - mine was (and I am showing my age here) stodgy spotted dick with pink custard ( I loved this pink goo!) and dumplings which I detested but always forced to eat by the table monitors . Gosh we had tables and seats!!

Good luck to all in their nutritional aspirations!! :D


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