Better yet, how about not using candy as reward in school? How about getting rid of all the soda and candy bar machines? How about serving nutritious meals instead of canned starch in the school cafeteria? How about not using M&Ms as counting in math?
If a child is so overweight that the condition is curtailing his activities at school (he can't fit into the desk), then a private meeting should be held with his parents. The child may have a medical condition and should be given a physical by a doctor. But for a child who is active but still has baby fat, I think the "fat report cards" is a huge invasion.
We're giving children mixed messages. Many of the schools do nothing to teach good nutrition and use candy as rewards and have sweets for every holiday (hey, it's groundhog day! 65oz Snickers for everyone!). Yet, they somehow seem surprised when these children become overweight. I'm not suggesting that it's only the school's fault. But during the week, the average kid will spend just over half of his waking hours in school, so the schools must bear some responsibility.
Do I think schools should do this? No way! They already have enough babysitting to do. I think they should go back to teaching health, nutrition and phys ed. and focus the rest of their attentions more on teaching and less on babysitting.
Do I think parents are blind? yes, I think some are. We just don't want to see what we are doing that can hurt us or our kids. People smoke and know it's not good for them or their kids, but they do it anyhow.
Have you seen the show "Honey, we're killing this kids?" the last one had a family of "obese" people featured. The parents didn't realize how much their children weighed (the 7 yr old weighed something like 150 lbs) and they didnt realize how much they weighed. It was more about lifestyle than weight, however. They were very sedentary and ate almost no natural foods and almost all fast food. They finally got a grip and realized that weight aside, the lifestlye itself was very unhealthy and they asked for help. They didnt need the school to tell them to wake up.
I figure if it's an issue bothering the child they will eventually reach an age where they can tackle it on their own. It is not the job of the school to tell you that your child is overweight becuse they look at just the number. Big whoop.
I agree with meg that there are a lot of parents out there that are blind to what is wrong with their children.
But I think to send home a "report card" would be humiliating! <img src="/images/graemlins/frown.gif" alt="" /> These children are already the target of fat jokes and cruel children, how much worse is it going to make them feel to have a report card saying how fat they are? Talk about killing a kid's self esteem.
I like the idea of having one on one conferences with parents - maybe the school nurse or counselor could do this, and get permission to set up an appointment with the child's pediatrician.
As far as getting rid of PE, many schools are also trying to do away with recess, too! They want these kids in desks all day long being crammed with knowledge. No fresh air, no breaks, no movement. All because we have to keep up with other countries (or because some Senator wants to look good at re-election time.) <img src="/images/graemlins/mad.gif" alt="" />
And you have to be able to afford to play team sports for your school these days. No getting out there and just playing anymore.
and recess, dont forget that many, many school districts have cut recess down to 15 minutes or out altogether. Where I live kids get 15 minutes a day in K5 and 1st grade. Once they hit 2nd grade there is no recess, no art, no music and science and social studies are taught in alternating years.
it's sad, but the schools are so busy being babysitters they dont have the time to teach reading anymore.