Conclusion

The students of Roosevelt strongly believe that we deserve more than what we currently have.  According to the previous statements, Roosevelt is one of the few high schools that doesn’t have anything other than the typical lunch food.  Other schools either have off campus, vending machines, or other extras aside from school lunch.  We strongly believe that it is unfair to us as a school to not have even one of those three extras.  Although we may not have the reputation of a magnet school, we have statistically improved in many ways.  We believe that we deserve more than what we currently have, and want to be treated equally, as valued students in CPS.

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Photo Credit: Jasmine Castillo

7 thoughts on “Conclusion

    • Students who get free lunch deserve high quality food. If Aramark has been contracted by CPS to provide free lunch, both Aramark and CPS are responsible for feeding these young people a free lunch that is nourishing and dignified. Implying that the food would be better if students paid for it derails the conversation away from Aramark and CPS’s responsibility to serve safe and nourishing food to students.

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  1. No one – no matter your level of education, your race, your background or your wealth – no one deserves to be malnourished. Of course these students deserve better (and more) food – they’re fellow human beings, and that should be the only criteria necessary to feed good food to anyone. Green chicken? Blue plastic in hamburgers which are clearly discolored? Nothing but a biscuit for a side dish, for growing teenagers who are still developing and generally have higher calorie requirements? This is intolerable, a terrible way to treat active learners. If this is a district where many/most students qualify for free or reduced lunch, this may be the only meal of the day for some students.

    I’d love to help strengthen their arguments. Without intending to sound like a know-it-all, I’d like to present some ideas:
    – Can the students file a FOIA request asking for the Aramark contract and/or related memos and documents that disclose the financial terms of the contract, the RFP and actual results under the contract?
    – Can students create and present a table or series of tables showing how student performance at Roosevelt has improved over the past few years?
    – Can members of the public as well as those associated with the school donate to a fund that will purchase materials/food to make lunches for those who want to participate in a brown-bag boycott?
    – Is there a PTO/PTA where students can present their findings? What is the school district superintendent’s take on this?
    – Aramark’s track record of “saving money” hasn’t always been accurate – can a team of students investigate claims of savings and compare them to outcomes?
    – Right now it’s winter, which is prime planning season – can students lead a drive in Spring to create a community garden on school property, with produce used to supplement current lunches?
    – Last, what can the public do to help?

    I’m not a high school student anymore – I’m not even in Chicago. But I deeply appreciate civic engagement and student activism, and I think they’ve picked a good cause that’s resolvable. Best of luck to all of them.

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  2. Free lunch shouldn’t even enter the debate. Dept of Education is funded by us Taxpayers. The money budgeted for food should be used for food, not profits and/or bribes. I thought Michelle Obama’s lunch program was supposed to eliminate this poor excuse of food being feed to kids? Maybe she should be contacted? Please continue your efforts because you are the voice of the younger students also!

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    • The Dept. of Education doesn’t fund the School Meals Programs. I would be surprised if the CPS Board of Education budgets any money at all towards the Meals Programs. The National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Programs are funded Federally through customs duties.

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  3. As much as I and many other students would like to support your cause, Roosevelt High School isn’t being treated differently than all other high schools. A lot of neighborhood schools go through the struggle of eating bad quality lunch food. If this campaign looks for a change for all schools to have a good quality lunch and have actual data and statistics about students having better lunches than Roosevelt, this campaign will be credible. In the meantime, this is campaign will most likely not succeed and will be left with the last campaign of saving teachers jobs. I guess food seems more easy to deal with.

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