NH school board votes to restrict birthdays, snacks, treats

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MANCHESTER, N.H. (MyFoxBoston.com) - The Manchester, N.H. school board is targeting snacks, treats, and birthdays by passing a new policy which limits school birthday parties to once a month and restricts ice cream and popcorn sales to no more than twice a week.

The policy, which was approved by school board members Tuesday, is an update to the district's seven-page "wellness and nutrition policy." The plan keeps in place nutritional guidelines that limit fat content and calories in school meals and mandate the use of whole wheat bread, for example, the Union Leader reports.

While most of the changes are minor, the change limiting holiday and birthday parties to once a month unless nutrition standards are met may not be considered so petty, especially to children looking to celebrate their special day.

Debra Gagnon Langton, a sixth-grade teacher and the only board member who opposed the policy, told the newspaper she doesn't think it is the school's place to be the "food police" and take away from the child.

On the other hand, the Dept. of Agriculture reimburses Manchester and other districts for certain items as long as the school meets the mandated nutritional standards. Failure to comply could with these standards could result in a loss of funding.

It is unclear whether teachers or students would be disciplined if the policy were violated.

The policy must still go before the full school board for approval.

For more information: The Union Leader