A Ban on Bake Sales?!

I recently wrote an essay for my English class refuting an article that I read from the Washington Post. The article was about how several states are now banning bake sales at schools because they lead to childhood obesity. When reading this, I was astounded to hear that legislation has really banned such an important part of growing up! And, why ban bake sales when you have children at a cafeteria that offers them noting but fried food, processed meats, and plastic cheeses?!

Bad Diet?
Just visiting a bake sale, whether or not you buy and subsequently eat said item, does not mean that you will develop unhealthy diet habits. Having the occasional sweet dessert is encouraged in most 'healthy' diets; this is to support you to stay eating healthy on a regular basis and make you less likely break your diet and binge on high-fat foods.

For The Kids?
Bake sales are typically held at schools during after-school functions such as parent-teacher conferences, school events, plays, and other fundraisers. This means that the majority of patrons of a bake-sale are parents or other adults, not the students. "Removing bake sales will greatly impact the way children think about food, and will not have the desire to eat as many fatty foods like cupcakes and rice-crispy treats," one anonymous congressman wrote. If parents and other adults yet not students are the majority of the customers of bake sales, then the foods offered at a bake sale will not greatly affect the diet of students. This fact shows that removing bake-sales from schools will only be a detriment for students and will only remove a valuable opportunity to learn, not positively or negatively affect the diet of students.

What is the impact?
Each day, thousands of students across this country eat from cafeteria’s that offer mostly high-fat foods to choose from, thus these children are exposed to and are living on an unhealthy diet. Bake sales are typically only held once a month, if not less. So, if bake sales are only held on an infrequent basis, are mostly occurring after school hours, and are typically visited by parents and other adults, it only takes simple math to see that bake sales do not greatly affect the diets of students, and that removing bake sales from school will not positively affect the way that students eat on a daily basis. A better alternative is to completely redesign the meals offered each day to students in the cafeterias; this would be the only way, besides what the child eats at home, to change the diet of students to a healthier lifestyle.

Only about food?
A bake sale is an incalculable place that a student will learn about accounting, how to handle money, and managing a business. While the classroom setting of reading from a book and subsequently taking quizzes is a proven teaching system that enables millions of children to learn, there are still the students that have a difficult time learning in that way. Most students learn best by physically going through the process of the task at hand; handling money in a real world situation is sometimes the best or only way for a student to comprehend simple math. For any child, having real-world experience is the best way to practice and continue learning about any subject. The expertise learned from running a bake sale is a skill that a student will be able to use on a daily basis for the rest of their lives.

It's clear to see that while the intentions behind banning bake sales was for the well-being of the student, taking away such a valuable learning experience would be a detriment to all students. Bake sales give thousands of children the chance to learn about managing and running a business, accounting and simple math, and even communication skills. To take this away from students is denying them a key part of their education that could affect the rest of their lives.

I found these pictures online after listening to the radio about how many students protested the newly passed law banning bake sales at school in New York.

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            Baking & Pastry (AS)
            • Program areas include Culinary Arts, Culinary Management, and more
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            • Alumni have appeared in reality competition shows such as Top Chef
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            Professional Pastry Arts
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