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October 11, 2012 05:13 PM

Eureka Students Want Lunch Program Changes

Eureka, SD

As some school cafeterias ring with complaints about new federal lunch guidelines, other lunchrooms have more of a mixed tone.

Healthy eating is nothing new to students in Eureka. Its school has been recognized by the state for health initiatives it's had in place over the past handful of years. But students would still tweak the new federal standards.

"I feel satisfied with them. I think it's good," junior Kayla Bailey said.

Across the lunchroom senior Cameron Lux agrees that food on the plate is fine. He just needs more of it.

"I'm in football. I'm a lot more active than some people are and I get hungrier faster," Lux said.

And he says that despite eating everything on his tray. While some schools have had trouble with kids throwing veggies rather than eating them and then going home hungry that hasn't been true in Eureka.

"We've been a fresh fruit and vegetable school for five years now," superintendent Bo Beck said. "They're outside in baskets around the school so they're used to eating the fresh fruits and vegetables and I think it's become part of their meal."

But Beck agrees portions allowed through the new federal guidelines is an issue that needs to be tweaked. The school's head cook Renae Orth says the same.

"One high schooler said he thinks his stomach shrunk," Orth said.

She'd like to dish out more to kids, specifically more protein.

"Almost everyone's involved with some extra-curricular activity so we're burning the calories,” Lux said. “I know I would eat a lot more if I could."

That comes from someone who says he's used to the healthy food and fine with it and who's surrounded by friends who say the same.

As they hear complaints of hungry kids, the Eureka cooks say kids are throwing away less at their school. When they take out the trash, they say it's more paper products than food.

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