Giving out food to students

Discussion in 'Secondary Education' started by MathGuy82, Dec 12, 2016.

  1. MathGuy82

    MathGuy82 Companion

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    This semester especially, it has come to my attention that a dozen or so students are telling me they are hungry. Many students in our school qualify for reduced/free breakfast and lunch. I give out some kind of snack/treat every couple of weeks while students are taking an exam. It's something like a cup of popcorn. However, some students are asking me in class if they have things to eat now regularly. I am afraid if I say yes to one, the whole class is going to want something. If I give it to one student, shouldn't I be giving it to all? I remember in high school I could always eat no matter what, even if I was really hungry or not. Any suggestions? I already give out free pencils/paper to those who occasionally need it. It's not a big deal for this. If I start giving out food regularly, I'm afraid it will be expected and it would not come out of a school fund, it would come from my funds. Not that I mind spending my money on school supplies or an occasional treat every couple of weeks, I just don't know about having "extra food on hand". Other teachers I talk to apparently "always have food". Am I overthinking this? Do you give the food to them when no other students are around? I wouldn't mind giving snacks regularly to a dozen or so students but for "all students in all my classes regularly??" That might be a bit much. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
     
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  3. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    I wouldn't do it. If one kid gets food then it's not fair that all of them don't. It's not your job to provide food. 1st, it's their parent's job. 2nd, I would talk to an administrator or social worker so they can have the student go to someone to get food.
     
  4. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    Our school has an after school feeding program where any kid in the school can get a free nutritious snack. It's like a small meal, with a sandwich, some fruit, some cookies and usually a vegetable. It's a sack lunch, but it helps a lot with hunger at our school. It was a really easy grant to get.
     
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  5. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    I vehemently believe you should not do for students what their families should be doing for them. Providing regular free meals for every kid... I would actually consider that in the territory of inappropriate. The school should be able to help find other resources for the kids that really need it.
     
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  6. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    ,
     
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  7. MathGuy82

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    Thank you all so much!! I am agree with all of you all! I don't feel near as bad now for telling students no. That would be took much for students to expect me have food all the time. I am better now!
     
  8. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Out of curiosity, I did a google search on this matter. Plenty of hero teachers are out there buying food out of their own pockets. I still call this inappropriate. In no way should this be the teacher's responsibility. Unfortunately, the problem with being the hero to help out, it soon becomes one of your regular duties. It's a terribly unfair expectation to put on teachers.

    If the school sees a problem in the community, there are plenty of options.
     
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  9. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    ,
     
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  10. MathGuy82

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    I agree! If some teachers regularly have a few extra snacks for a special occasion that are not expensive, I find no problem IF they want to. However, I do find problem if we expect teachers to provide food. We are teachers, no charity snack givers.
     
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  11. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    ,
     
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  12. TeacherNY

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    I give my kids treats but that's it. Not meals. We shouldn't be expected to provide everything for them (it starts with US providing school supplies then gets out of control it seems). I know people will be offended if I say this but I'll say it anyway. If you can't afford to provide the basic necessities for a child (food, clothing, housing) then you shouldn't have them. Sorry if I offended anyone (not really).
     
  13. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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  14. Backroads

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    I also think there's the scenario of parents who really don't know how to... parent. And again, this is not the down-on-luck moment family.

    They don't know how to budget for food or all the other necessities despite sufficient money coming in.
     
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  15. Mr Magoo

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    In every city and town there are community gardens, most towns have several.

    Almost all of the community gardens offer FREE Water , to water what ever garden plants that are planted. (To save on the high cost of water for a garden)

    But

    Almost all of the community gardens are empty of vegetables and full of weeds.
    Sitting there unused.

    I am sure that if a Teacher called the community garden's phone number and asked if the class could have some of that garden to plant vegetables to feed that class's students families, they would be very welcome to do that.

    P.S.
    Of course I am sure there would be some students/families who would want all the food who did not plant anything or pull any weeds. (Which is why all community gardens have padlocks)
     
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  16. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    ,
     
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  17. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Yeah. The other year in my 2nd grade class, we were interviewing the Student of the Week. One girl was asked her favorite show. She replied "American Horror Story".
     
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  18. Leaborb192

    Leaborb192 Enthusiast

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    ,
     
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  19. ChildWhisperer

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    You could bring in healthy treats on Fridays or every other week or even once a month, such as leftover bagels from Panera.
    You could see if they or any other bakery/shop is willing to donate their leftovers/throw-aways to you to give to your kids
    But you definitely should not be spending your own money. That's too much, and it will become a burden to you and the kids will end up feeling entitled to getting food from you
     
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  20. MissScrimmage

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    I worked at a school that partnered with a local church. The church provided money for food and then the school provided lunches for families that regularly didn't send a lunch. Yup, it is the parent's responsibility to send a lunch. But if they don't, I am sure not going to let a 6-year-old starve all day.

    That being said, there should be churches or organizations that would help with a snack program of some sort.
     
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  21. ivy axenty

    ivy axenty Guest

    Dec 13, 2016

    Do you know if they are on a program that gives students food to take home and or on the weekends? I have talked to teachers in my area and they give the student a backpack full of food that they give out so the student has food for the weekend.
     
  22. mollydoll

    mollydoll Connoisseur

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    I always have healthy snacks available for anybody who is hungry. I don't hand them out or leave them out, but I let kids know I always have the snacks and they ask me if they are really hungry. I teach high school, and mostly nobody abuses this. They seem to respect that I have a limited budget and treat it as an emergency reserve. I flat out refuse to spend my money on anything else: no lab supplies, no tissues, no pencils, but I don't want hungry kids in my class.
     
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  23. Mr Magoo

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    They have free lunch here for most of the students and in middle school (Jr High) they also have free breakfast provided. (I only know High School / Jr High )

    The school policy here is Subs can't give the students anything to eat.
     
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  24. ChildWhisperer

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    One of the local churches provides snack packs (Brown paper lunch bag) for our Head Start kids every other weekend
     
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  25. MathGuy82

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    I so agree! I mean how much is it going to set a parent back to give a kid a package of chips/cookies or a box of granola bars a week? I mean 5 bucks a week to keep a student with some food?
     
  26. MathGuy82

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    That's cool!
     
  27. MathGuy82

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    That's a good way to go. See I think that's good that there is no abuse or students coming in relying on you day to day. I think that's a good system.
     
  28. mollydoll

    mollydoll Connoisseur

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    What I do is spend ~$25/month at Costco. I support a few charities on a monthly or yearly basis--I just consider this food allowance one of those items in my budget. (or did--I am in a different alternative environment now and no longer bring the snacks. I don't have many students and we get a snack delivered for everybody since we don't offer lunch.)
     
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  29. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    I have never given students food, we're not supposed to, we're not expected to, and I see the amount of food students throwing away from their free lunch and breakfast, apparently if they're picky, then they're not hungry enough for me to spend my own money on them.

    I know I sound harsh, but I cannot stand food being thrown away. This is highschool, I have 100 students (which is nothing compared to most high schools of 200 students per teacher). So if i was providing food, it would end up in large quantities to be fair. If I had one self contained elementary school of little children, I would have a different attitude. I'd probably have some snacks on hand, because they're younger, and because there would be less of them.
     
  30. TeacherNY

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    That's the mindset that they have with "free" food. They don't care since they didn't pay for it. Disgraceful.
     

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