‘In-Class Breakfast’ to begin in February

%27In-Class+Breakfast%27+to+begin+in+February

Linda Poeng

A good start Media Academy junior Ricky Esquival takes advantage of the breakfast provided before school. Currently, only 8 percent of students eat breakfast in the cafeteria. Many don't eat it at home, or they eat junk food.

Tony Srimoukda can barely focus in his second period class. Trying to pay attention in Advanced Placement U.S. History is rather difficult because he is too preoccupied with his rumbling stomach that is demanding something to eat.
Srimoukda skips out on the free breakfast offered every day to all students in the school cafeteria; he would rather wait until lunch or until he gets home to eat. But while Srimoukda waits, his stomach is in pure agony.
That stomach may soon be saved by the “In-Class Breakfast” pilot program.
In-Class Breakfast is a program that the Youth Wellness Advisory Committee will start in February, along with the Tiger Clinic, the Fremont cafeteria, OUSD Nutrition Services and the S.D Bechtel, Jr. Foundation.
Although details are still being worked out, students probably will be allowed to eat breakfast during the first 10-15 minutes of their first period class.
At a meeting held last week, students involved in the Youth Wellness Advisory Committee presented the plan to teachers, community members and health workers.
They indicated that teachers prefer to have the breakfasts during first period, rather than second period. However, it is unclear whether the breakfasts will be delivered to classrooms or if students will be able to pick up a bagged breakfast when they enter the gates before school starts.
The wellness committee is excited to launch the program because members know that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, the “fuel” that helps give the body energy when it needs it the most.
Joaquin Hernandez, a senior at Media Academy and a wellness committee member, is looking forward to In-Class Breakfast.
“The program that is going to happen will be a good change,” Hernandez said. “It will benefit students in the school.”
Right now, only 8 percent of students consume school breakfast, and it is estimated that about 40 percent of students eat breakfast at home, and the other half of those report eatin junk food.
Most of the time, students would rather sleep than wake up and have enough time to eat breakfast. Other times, students skip breakfast because there is no food at home.
Katie Riemer, Fremont’s “wellness champion” and the person in charge of the Wellness Committee, has been working to get all the teachers to cooperate with the breakfast program.
She and the wellness committee knew that one thing that would win over teachers is to make sure that breakfast was quick and not messy.
Therefore, no syrup will be served.
The committee also knows the food needs to be appealing to students and healthy food.
So far most of the teachers at Fremont are supportive of the breakfasts.
Jeanette Bell, an ELD teacher at Media Academy, thinks the In-Class Breakfast will be a good idea, although she does have requirements if breakfast is going to be served in her class.
“It’s a good idea, but if they do it, there should be a cut-off time,” said Bell. “If students come [in] late, they shouldn’t get breakfast because it’ll disrupt class.”
Also Media Student, Leo Jerald, has optimistic feelings towards In-Class breakfast.
“It’s a good idea, some people can get breakfast in the morning time, they can concentrate better with something in their stomach.” said Jerald.
Emiliano Sanchez, vice principal of College Preparatory & Architecture Academy, has mixed feelings about In-Class Breakfast.
“It makes sense to give breakfast to younger kids, like middle school and freshman students,” said Sanchez. “But older students should know when to eat. They should know that without food in the morning, they won’t have energy. And that is a life skill they must have.”