T he fruit and veg e table bar at Cheboygan High School is the busiest area in the cafeteria. Hands grab for a variety of healthy foods that are now part of their daily meals.
"Our kids are happy with some of the new choices . T he different vegetables , you're seeing a lot of the fresh fruits again , t his has always been kind of incorporated, but we're using different kinds. The new regulations required to offer not only just the freshness of the certain categories in certain amounts of your dark greens, legumes, and red red orange vegetables and such. The kids are really happy to have these options on different days," Cheboygan Schools Food Services Director John Galacz said.
C heboygan public schools , like every other school in Northern Michigan have implemented the new USDA regulations for school meals. Each student now must have a vegetable or fruit to purchase at lunch while finding less bread and proteins on the menu.
Petoskey's Sheridan Elementary S chool Principal Joel Donaldson says that these new standards will cost more money for schools and families down the road. But he believes the benefits outweigh the costs.
" I think again healthier kids are going to have healthier test scores ," Donaldson said.
D onaldson says that research leads him to believe that with time a healthier diet will translate into a healthier mind . H e also believes this plan opens up the doors to other learning opportunities.
"We've added some health components to our curriculum this year, where we'll be talking about nutrition and calorie intake and exercises and it fits into our overall school plan of being a healthier student body," Donaldson said.