Let children eat a lunch of their own choosing

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From: Diana Priestley, Fixby Road, Huddersfield.

I RARELY agree with Jayne Dowle, but her article (Yorkshire Post, May 3) about school meals is the worst yet.

Starting with the “right” to school dinner, the first two paragraphs contain the words “banned” (packed lunches) and “compulsory” (school meals). How can you have “rights” if you cannot refuse them?

I escaped school dinner by going home. My children, happy to eat apple, cheese, bread etc, but not allowed to do so, wasted much of their lunch. We always had a proper meal at teatime.

As a teacher, I recall the bullying dinner woman who, when asked by a diabetic girl for her special meal, told the girl she would have the same as everyone else and like it.

The girl’s classmates downed trays and declared a strike. The supervisor was called, the head was sent for. The girl got her meal, but can you imagine the scope for bullying if meals were compulsory?

Jayne’s “ideal world” of school dining is hilarious. It sounds like lunch in a pleasant small café or restaurant. Has she heard the noise in a school dining room? Seen the mess? Smelt the smell?

Children have to conform in many ways at school – important ways like learning to read. For goodness sake, let them eat their own choice of lunch.