Will tuck shops be banned?

I can accept that a good balanced diet assists learning, especially at primary and secondary school level, it would appear to make sense – although the actual evidence seems more anecdotal than scientific so far. But is it really necessary to introduce new legislation to force schools to apply that understanding to the food they supply to their students? and are NI schools really waiting until that legislation is introduced?

  • Comrade Stalin

    Stupid nonsense from a silly government trying to do the job of people’s parents.

    Good fitness is a combination of diet and exercise. Why aren’t the government looking into ensuring school kids are receiving proper physical education ? A run around an old gravel pitch once a week hardly fits.

  • SlugFest

    What’s a ‘tuck shop’? (me a blow-in)

  • peteb

    That’s a good point, Comrade. Although I’d prefer it if the Education Boards simply introduced a policy regarding the balanced diet issue… rather than wait for the legislation.

    Unless, of course, government is waiting to enable an enforcement of the amount spent.. without actual increasing the budget…

    *wanders off*

  • MacDara

    SlugFest: a tuck shop is basically a sweet shop within a school open during break times, sometimes run by the pupils themselves.

    As for the new legislation, it seems like a good idea in principle, but the fact of the matter is that there’s nothing wrong with the occasional chocolate bar and banning sweets outright is just overkill. And besides, what are diabetic kids going to do?

  • cladycowboy


    ‘Unless, of course, government is waiting to enable an enforcement of the amount spent.’

    In my old school a lot of pupils feasted on tuck shop produce without spending a penny, but rather during free periods prise open the shutters and help themselves. However, you’d have to have been pretty slim to have crawled underneath so maybe a limit on how much fat kids can spend and cctv to capture the thieving slim lads who caused the chocolate prices to go up! πŸ˜‰

  • GurnyGub

    Ok, Anyone still alive remember Ma Trainor’s opposite Barrack Street? A tiny home bakery that slathered warm sodas and farls with jam, and passed them hand over fist at break time. The scrum in and out got rid of excess carbohydrates, back to class in black blazers with a light dusting of flour.

  • Kate McCabe

    In the states, a lot of multinational corporations (like Coke, Pepsi, McDonalds, etc.)have huge contracts with schools to provide food and soft drinks so that they can market their products to children (you know, reach them at an early age).

    This article talks about some of the consequences, as well as the relationship between nutrition and learning:


    It’s from the mainstream media, but still…

  • Cynic

    Oh well….they may not be able to read and write but at least they will have good teeth and that’s what’s really importantant, isn’t it!

  • mikeTV

    The tuck shop will be driven underground, run out of lockers by young entrepreneurs. Our right wing nutters should be happy they have been given this chance.

  • John

    Stupid nonsense from a silly government trying to do the job of people’s parents.

    A M E N

  • Alan

    *Stupid nonsense from a silly government trying to do the job of people’s parents.*

    Actually, it is a serious point. It is not about banning the selling of sweets in schools, but about the improvement of school dinners and therefore the health of the community in the future.

    When you pay for school dinners ( now around Β£1.80 per day )a parent does not know what type of quality of food their kids are getting. Some of it is appalling. The problem really hits where kids can spend their own dinner money on high fat/high sugar/ high salt dinners. The issue is that we should not allow poor quality food to be available for sale in schools – what is wrong with that, particularly when kids are on free school meals?

    It is also really contradictory to be teaching the importance of good food on the curriculum and then allowing poor quality food to arrive on children’s plates at lunch time. A case of grandma does know best!

  • Jo

    I recently took my child off school dinners and have provided a good healthy lunch for her each day. Its one way of ensuring a healthy sugar controlled diet.

    The sale of Coke in schools (and the unavailability of simple H2O) is a disgrace.

    Its far far better now that one arm of government (edcuation) acts to assist in limiting the spread of child obesity and poor diet that is storing up huge problems for another arm of government (health) in years to come.

  • Anne Dunne

    I recently blew back into N.Down and tramped round the schools selecting one for my P1 entrant. All the teachers / heads I met recommended pack lunches as they judged the school dinners unfit for consumption. A past initiative had been to centralise food production and distribute this around the borough for re-heating.


  • Alan


    Completely agree on the water issue. The girls go to school with a frozen bottle of water which they drink during the rest of the day – when they need it, rather than asking the teacher.

    Apparently it actually inproves performance – something to do with electrolytes!?

    Also, peer pressure is a big issue over how kids want to take their lunch.

  • Jo


    Same here, dehydration is I think associated with lack of concentray……er. where was i

  • Animus

    Am I naive, or isn’t it up to parents to take some interest in what their children are eating at school? The furore over Jamie’s Dinners shows that parents’ complacency is a big issue in itself.

    But I do see Alan’s point too – peer pressure and the availability of junk food has a powerful pull. In my school students were not allowed to purchase Cokes during the lunch period at all due to pressure from angry parents. More angry parents needed!