Today’s Menu: French Fries and Feelings


Photo Credit: Bella Hammond

Isabella Hammond

Lunchtime: the hour for eating, talking with friends, and sometimes catching up on homework. For many students, 4th, 5th, and 6th hours are longed for in the morning, and missed in the afternoon. However, our lunch ladies work nonstop to provide food for students who don’t bring their own lunch. The long-debated topic among students has arrisin over the years: are school lunches healthy?


Health Benefits

Nutrition is an important part of the mental development of children and teens. For example, according to Fernando Gómez-Pinilla, PhD (2010), while diets high in omega-3 fatty acids in food support cognitive function, diets high in saturated fats reduce cognitive function, (Gómez-Pinilla, 2010, p.1).

A study performed by Anderson, Gallagher, and Ritchie (2018) found that over a 5 year period, students who had a well-balanced diet received slightly increased grades and test scores, along with the added benefit of better student health, (Anderson et al., 2018, p.29).

But would you consider what is served at our school healthy? Students and faculty had mixed opinions on the matter.


Legacy Beliefs

Every day, the lunch ladies prepare food for us, serving between 400 and 450 students lunch a day. Joie Flores, one such member, commented on the misconceptions around school lunches and the lunch ladies themselves.

“I think it’s kind of sad because a lot of our food, we make it so that it’s healthier for you,” Ms. Flores remarked when asked about the bad rap school lunches have received, “And most of it is actually very good, you just have to give it a shot.”

However, most students do not agree, stating that school lunches are unhealthy. Callista Hares, a sophomore at our school said that part of what makes some school lunches unhealthy is “the pizza covered in grease, the curly fries, and the an unlimited supply of ketchup.”

There is little agreement when it comes to the topic of school lunches, but most believe that some amount of change needs to occur.



The school menu offers little variety in the meals, and every day pizza is supplied, notably a much less healthy item compared with others. Many students agree that this is a large part of the problem in school lunches.

Matt Booren, a social sciences teacher at Legacy, argues “I do think that there should be healthier options that are prepared on site for students to have access to.” Ms. Flores agrees, expressing that she feels there is room for a more mixed menu.


Final Thoughts

How do you feel about the school lunches? How much do you really know about them and our lunch ladies?

Regardless of your opinion on the food provided at our school, the lunch ladies work hard and care a lot about their jobs and the students.

“We love the school, we love the students.”

— Ms. Flores

If you’re curious about the status of your lunch, talk with any of the lunch ladies! Many students don’t know the names of the cafeteria faculty, and it means a lot to get involved in your school community.

“We love the school, we love the students,” Ms. Flores adds, “We want you guys to be happy and come down and see us. And we’re more than happy to give out samples, to talk with you, answer questions.”


Works Cited

Gómez-Pinilla, F. (2010). Brain foods: the effects of nutrients on brain function. Retrieved from PMC2805706/#R3

Anderson, M., et al. (2018). School Meal Quality and Academic Success. Retrieved from