Education Action: Toronto

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6. Food and Education

We are for:

  • A school system that acknowledges the central role that it can and must play in the development of food systems that are environmentally, economically and socially sustainable
  • Schools that understand themselves and are understood as part of the food system
  • A school system that establishes and observes practical food procurement policies that support local sustainable food systems
  • A school system that establishes environmentally responsible waste disposal both system-wide and at the local school-community level
  • Schools that engage with people who work within food systems from cultivation and stock-rearing through processing, distribution, sales, and catering to waste disposal as a regular feature of the curriculum
  • Schools that engage their students consciously and critically in as many of these stages as possible on school premises (from community gardens to food preparation classes and compost management)
  • Schools that practice dietary and cultural diversity in the procurement and provision of food and that ensure that these forms of diversity are fully understood by teachers and students and all members of school communities
  • The provision in schools of subsidize and appropriate breakfast, lunch and snack programs accessible to all
  • The organization of the places and times allotted for eating together in ways that allow opportunities for meaningful interactions across ages for students, among teachers, and with parents and members of the broader community
  • The integration of sustainable energy policies into sustainable food policies within school facilities and operations
  • The development of public partnerships between school boards and municipalities and other public institutions for the environmentally sustainable management of school grounds, public parks and community gardens on school board property
  • Education about food across the curriculum and in all facets of school-community life
  • Schools that include food in its relation to public health, personal well-being, the environment and the economy across the curriculum
  • A school curriculum that ensures that all members of the school community have a critical understanding of environmentally sustainable waste disposal
  • Schools that incorporate the teaching of sensory discrimination and aesthetics into the curriculum and into food practices within the school, with the understanding that this means all five senses
  • Schools that connect food consumption with physical fitness and activity and that ensure that the balance is not only understood but also practiced within the school and the larger community
  • School curricula that situate the use and abuse of addictive or harmful substances within notions of bodily sustainability, that is to say within an understanding of the significance of total bodily intake of air, fluids and solids
  • School curricula that integrate knowledge and understanding of the place of sustainable food systems within sustainable energy and natural resource systems (from carbon footprint and climate change to local self-sufficiency)
  • School curricula that situates food within global history and geography so that all members of local school communities can understand the part that can and do play globally as well as locally
  • School curricula that examine the place of food within the struggle for human rights and social justice, locally, globally and historically
  • Schools that work to reduce or eliminate gender distinctions in the acquisition and practice of food-related skills and that promote an understanding of the interactions of gender and food
  • An understanding that school-based food workers should be considered as valuable resources for teachers and students, equal partners in school decision-making, and role models as exponents of environmentally sustainable practices
  • An understanding that students and teachers have a role to play within food policy development and delivery at both the system and the local school levels within a framework of environmentally, economically and socially sustainable practices
h3. Facilities and budgets
  • The establishment of a network of regional model farms and natural science schools to which local school boards will have access for field trips that allow students to play an active role in food production and preparation
  • The provision of budgets within every school for activities that bring farms and schools in closer contact
  • The inclusion of kitchens and dining rooms as a matter of course in all schools
  • The insistence that kitchens be staffed by unionized schoolboard employees, mandated to work closely with the teaching staff to ensure the integration of instruction and food preparation
  • The adequate provision of water-coolers and other forms of access to healthy municipal tapwater on every floor in every school
  • The provision of re-usable plates, cutlery and beverage conatiners in all school activities that incorporate food and drink (from staffrooms to dining rooms, from graduation celebrations to school community meetings)

We are against:

  • The contracting out of school food services and the maintenance of school grounds and facilities to the private sector
  • Contracts between school systems (or individual schools) and corporations that are designed to provide exclusive access for the advertisement, promotion, sale or sponsorship of foods and beverages produced or distributed by that corporation
  • School curricula that emphasize nutritional features of food science to the exclusion of the broader cultural, social and environmental considerations that affect food systems and food behaviours
  • The provision and consumption of food and drink in plastic containers on school premises
  • The sale and consumption of bottled water on school premises where access to healthy tapwater is guaranteed
  • The provision and consumption of junk food on school premises
  • The presence of vending machines on school premises

  1. bob   #   May 22, 04:40 PM

    allo, it’s nice.

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