Wagner will start visiting schools today to see what students are eating. She will have breakfast at Muir Elementary School today to observe students in their natural lunch habitat. Krikorian has already visited the kitchen of every cafeteria in the district to evaluate equipment and cooking processes.
"My interest is more in terms of the selections our kids are making and whether we're offering too many," Wagner said. "Years ago, when I was a kid, when you ate in the cafeteria you got a whole entrée. And whatever the meal was for the day you were supposed to eat it. Over the years, teachers and administrators saw a lot of waste with meals going the trash so having more selections became vogue."
The district tries to meet state nutritional requirements, but the students have the ultimate control of what they eat, she said.
"The concern is if the kids are making the best choice," Wagner said. "Are they just eating bread sticks for lunch? Is the fruit and salad we are offering getting eaten? And some kids eat two meals at school -- breakfast and lunch."
She hopes to change the way students eat by encouraging good eating habits while they are still young.
All public schools are mandated to remove soda from campus vending machines starting with the elementary grades, Krikorian said. The district has already replaced sodas with water, juices and sports drinks in vending machines in elementary and middle schools. It has set a goal of doing the same on the district's five high schools by July, he said.
When the mandate was proposed, many site administrators were concerned that they would lose money for Associated Student Body groups, who used the vending machine money to fund programs, Krikorian said. The high schools' Associated Student Body uses most of the soda money to help fund athletic programs, he said.