by Gordon Jenkins
Patricia Mulvey reports on the blog F is for French Fry that last Friday, a group of fourth-graders at Nuestro Mundo Elementary School in Madison, WI had planned to protest the unhealthy food served in their cafeteria by staying behind in class during recess and enjoying a home-cooked meal with fresh fruits and vegetables. Their “Real Food Picnic” – you might call it an Eat-In– was canceled, however, when the school district’s assistant superintendent alerted parents and administrators and asked them to discourage the event, citing concerns about food allergies, lack of supervision and the presence of news media.
The students are members of a group called “Boycott School Lunch (BCSL)” that they founded last fall after conducting some “gross experiments” like measuring how much grease they could squeeze out of a hamburger. This year, they’ve been learning about Martin Luther King Jr. and the civil rights movement in history class. When teacher Joshua Forehand showed them a film about the Children’s Crusade that took place in Birmingham, AL in 1963, the students were inspired to organize a peaceful protest in support of improving school lunch.