Stevenage mum slams lunchtime dictators

A MUM has hit out at a school for telling parents what food they can and cannot put in their children’s lunchboxes.

Karen Dunne, who has two children aged 6 and 11 at Camps Hill School in Stevenage, said a change in school policy means teachers are dictating how parents feed their children by banning snacks and sugary drinks.

“We are being told as parents what we can and can’t give our kids to eat,” the 39-year-old, of Roland Road, said. “My son was told to hide his lunch and not eat it as it was not fair on the other children, which I feel is extremely unfair.”

She is fighting the ban by continuing to include chocolate bars and crisps in her children’s lunch, including a note telling teachers not to touch their food.

She said: “There are a lot of angry parents at the school and a lot of the younger children are scared to eat anything in fear of being told off.

“On the school dinners menu they still have puddings. Try telling a five-year-old that the boy next to them can have chocolate pudding and custard but they can’t have a chocolate bar.

“They’ve got no right to tell parents how to feed their children. If there is an issue with a child’s behaviour because of food then they should deal with them individually, not take it out on the whole school.”

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But acting headteacher Clare McFlynn said the majority of parents were behind the school’s efforts to promote healthy eating.

“Camps Hill School has healthy schools status and as part of our whole school approach we encourage children to have a healthy and nutritious mid-day meal, including those who bring in packed lunches from home.

“We promote every day as a healthy eating day, although on Friday crisps and chocolate are permitted.

“We are delighted with the overwhelming support we have had from parents in promoting the benefits of good eating habits as part of a healthy lifestyle which also encourage good concentration and learning in school.”

*What do you think? Should parents be told what to pack for their children’s lunch? Email us at or vote on our poll on the homepage.

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