Schools deny state healthy food certification

What’s the price of serving healthy food and drinks at after-school events? According to the schools, about $40,000.

The Board of Education voted at its June 11 meeting to confirm that it will not meet the standards of the Healthy Food Certification Statement, a set of food guidelines published by the state.

The endorsement does not allow the schools to have free reign sell unhealthy items, like cake and soda, to students during lunch. It does enable the schools continue to sell “unhealthy foods” during after school events — including during games or parent-teacher functions, according to Acting Superintendent Dr. Robert Miller.

Those “unhealthy foods” include caffeinated drinks like coffee and tea, Miller said.

“It is estimated that the district would lose approximately $40,000 in annual revenue at the Ridgefield High School by adopting these standards; this amount would be offset somewhat by about $20,000 in increased federal food subsidies,” said Miller.

“If formal action is not taken, the sale of food and beverages during non-school hours (including PTO functions) would have the same restrictions that are in effect for school lunches,” said Miller’s memo to the board. “This would severely limit the types of food and beverages that could be served during non-school hours and would also result in higher food and beverage costs.”