Worcester head wants Jamie Oliver's junk food help

Worcester News: CHEF APPEAL: The headteacher of Christopher Whitehead Language College has written to Jamie Oliver. CHEF APPEAL: The headteacher of Christopher Whitehead Language College has written to Jamie Oliver.

THE headteacher of a Worcester school has written to TV chef Jamie Oliver asking him to stop a supermarket giant serving his pupils junk food.

Neil Morris says the Sainsbury’s store next to his school – Christopher Whitehead Language College – is tempting pupils with offers of cheap sweets and fizzy drinks.

But Sainsbury’s says it also offers deals on healthy foods and has offered to meet Mr Morris to discuss his concerns.

Mr Morris says he has already had to send teachers to the supermarket to order pupils back to class and fears the school’s canteen will be put out of business if pupils continue to abandon healthy eating options in favour of junk food.

Now he has asked the face of Sainsbury’s and champion of healthy school dinners Jamie Oliver to see for himself the impact he says the supermarket is having on the school.

Mr Morris said: “I am asking Jamie Oliver to come in and to meet with the store manager. All I am asking is that they don’t serve the students after 8.25am (the start of the school day).

“They say they are not, but they are. We have teachers now outside the store getting the children back into class. But these offers are causing poor diet and litter for the pupils and the school.

“They have a great responsibility within the community that they aren’t actually going with or meeting.

"We don’t want to have to ban our kids from Sainsbury’s but that is the way it could be going.”

In a letter addressed to Mr Oliver, who is the celebrity face of Sainsbury’s advertising campaign, Mr Morris said he was “increasingly concerned” that the school’s excellent canteen, which has achieved the Government’s Healthy Schools status, will be put out of business by the “aggressive promotion of cheap, unhealthy, ‘two for the price of one’ junk foods”.

Sainsbury’s opened its new store in St John’s in March 2009. In return for planning permission it agreed with Worcester City Council to fund the new St John’s Youth Centre and Sports Centre as well as improvements to Christopher Whitehead Language College.

A spokesman for Sainsbury’s said: "Our stores aim to make a real positive difference to the community so we were sorry to hear that one of our neighbours feels this way.

“As well as special offers on occasional treats like soft drinks and crisps we also offer great deals on fruit and other healthier products.

“We also take great care to advertise the benefits of healthy eating. Our Worcester store manager will be getting in touch with Mr Morris shortly to arrange a meeting to address his concerns and explore ways we can work more closely with the school in future."

This week a report by the Royal Economic Society claimed Mr Oliver’s healthy school dinners had led to a marked improvement in national currriculum test results.

The research suggested children reared on the healthier dinners did far better in tests for 11-year-olds.

No-one from Mr Oliver’s company was available to comment

Comments (16)

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10:09am Wed 31 Mar 10

rgdudley says...

How about Sainsbury’s putting their money where their mouth is and offering free fruit to Chrissies?
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Having watched stores turfing out perfectly good food on the "Display until" date they could provide this to schools at no cost to themselves and actually help kids get a healthy diet rather than just advertising one.
How about Sainsbury’s putting their money where their mouth is and offering free fruit to Chrissies? . Having watched stores turfing out perfectly good food on the "Display until" date they could provide this to schools at no cost to themselves and actually help kids get a healthy diet rather than just advertising one. rgdudley
  • Score: 0

10:27am Wed 31 Mar 10

jb says...

Are these pupils legitimately visiting Sainsbury's at lunchtimes or are they out of school when they shouldn't be. Surely if they are allowed out at lunchtimes they can shop and buy where they like and what they like. What if they bought fish and chips locally, would the school also petition the chip shop owner? I am all for healthy eating for kids but this may be crossing the line trying to ban them from spending their money how they want to.
Are these pupils legitimately visiting Sainsbury's at lunchtimes or are they out of school when they shouldn't be. Surely if they are allowed out at lunchtimes they can shop and buy where they like and what they like. What if they bought fish and chips locally, would the school also petition the chip shop owner? I am all for healthy eating for kids but this may be crossing the line trying to ban them from spending their money how they want to. jb
  • Score: 0

10:39am Wed 31 Mar 10

jammer says...

Would a better diet improve their behaviour do you think? I'm feed up with surly kids blocking the pavements, dropping litter, shouting, and straggling across the road regardless of the traffic.
Would a better diet improve their behaviour do you think? I'm feed up with surly kids blocking the pavements, dropping litter, shouting, and straggling across the road regardless of the traffic. jammer
  • Score: 0

10:41am Wed 31 Mar 10

Tulstar says...

I agree with both of the comments above - If the kids are allowed out of school at lunchtimes, then they should be able to spend their money on whatever the hell they like. You can't allow kids out of school and then govern what they can and cannot eat.
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I think it would be a great idea if Sainsburys donated their 'out of date' fruit (which of course there's nothing wrong with) to the school. Perhaps the schools could offer free fruit smoothies to the kids at lunchtimes. It might just stop some of them going out and buying sweets and pop.
I agree with both of the comments above - If the kids are allowed out of school at lunchtimes, then they should be able to spend their money on whatever the hell they like. You can't allow kids out of school and then govern what they can and cannot eat. . I think it would be a great idea if Sainsburys donated their 'out of date' fruit (which of course there's nothing wrong with) to the school. Perhaps the schools could offer free fruit smoothies to the kids at lunchtimes. It might just stop some of them going out and buying sweets and pop. Tulstar
  • Score: 0

11:13am Wed 31 Mar 10

jovialcommonsense says...

"Perhaps the schools could offer free fruit smoothies to the kids at lunchtimes."
Fruit smoothies are healthy BUT will destroy their teeth.
If you eat fruit you probably swallow most of the sugars, Smoothies release all the natural sugars and acid in fruit and coat the teeth with stickyness.
"Perhaps the schools could offer free fruit smoothies to the kids at lunchtimes." Fruit smoothies are healthy BUT will destroy their teeth. If you eat fruit you probably swallow most of the sugars, Smoothies release all the natural sugars and acid in fruit and coat the teeth with stickyness. jovialcommonsense
  • Score: 0

12:32pm Wed 31 Mar 10

Tulstar says...

But if the kids are going to be consuming sugar anyway in the form of sweets and pop, then I think the smoothies would be a good alternative. Not all kids like to eat fruit. I'm sure a lot more would drink a smoothie. Plus, at least with smoothies you know what's in them ;)
But if the kids are going to be consuming sugar anyway in the form of sweets and pop, then I think the smoothies would be a good alternative. Not all kids like to eat fruit. I'm sure a lot more would drink a smoothie. Plus, at least with smoothies you know what's in them ;) Tulstar
  • Score: 0

12:52pm Wed 31 Mar 10

Maggie Would says...

FWIW, I think that educating them about healthy food is more valuable than a ban, which is a bit draconian. Remember, some of these kids are 16 or nearly so - old enough to get married, but not allowed to shop in Sainsburys!
FWIW, I think that educating them about healthy food is more valuable than a ban, which is a bit draconian. Remember, some of these kids are 16 or nearly so - old enough to get married, but not allowed to shop in Sainsburys! Maggie Would
  • Score: 0

1:31pm Wed 31 Mar 10

jovialcommonsense says...

Re smoothies:
The main need is for education. There is nothing wrong with anything if it is not overdone.
A smoothie every day is worse than sweets because of the stickyness and acid.
Bacteria in your mouth eat sugar and excrete acid. It is the acid which causes decay, so adding acid from things like oranges and tomatoes etc increases the problem.
If you are going to eat something sugary then clean your mouth first to remove the bacteria. If you are going to eat something acidy allow at least an hour for your saliva to dilute it before eating anything else.
Heres another thought....All fizz in any drink is acidic, some minerals in water is acidic, therefore the healthy fizzy mineral water, if constantly sipped will destroy your teeth over time.
There is no need to ban anything as long as proper education is given.
Re smoothies: The main need is for education. There is nothing wrong with anything if it is not overdone. A smoothie every day is worse than sweets because of the stickyness and acid. Bacteria in your mouth eat sugar and excrete acid. It is the acid which causes decay, so adding acid from things like oranges and tomatoes etc increases the problem. If you are going to eat something sugary then clean your mouth first to remove the bacteria. If you are going to eat something acidy allow at least an hour for your saliva to dilute it before eating anything else. Heres another thought....All fizz in any drink is acidic, some minerals in water is acidic, therefore the healthy fizzy mineral water, if constantly sipped will destroy your teeth over time. There is no need to ban anything as long as proper education is given. jovialcommonsense
  • Score: 0

1:46pm Wed 31 Mar 10

Hawlev says...

Do parents have to give permission for pupils to leave school during the day? If not then I would suggest not allowing pupils to leave school premises. Who has responsibilty for these pupils whilst they are away from the school during lunch?
Do parents have to give permission for pupils to leave school during the day? If not then I would suggest not allowing pupils to leave school premises. Who has responsibilty for these pupils whilst they are away from the school during lunch? Hawlev
  • Score: 0

5:06pm Wed 31 Mar 10

angrybear77 says...

jammer wrote:
Would a better diet improve their behaviour do you think? I'm feed up with surly kids blocking the pavements, dropping litter, shouting, and straggling across the road regardless of the traffic.
I think you are generalising students, being a student myself I get quite offended when people generalise us and assume we are all the same. Yes there are some rude people in our school but what school doesn't. I wish that people would stop Labelling everyone below 18 years of age
[quote][p][bold]jammer[/bold] wrote: Would a better diet improve their behaviour do you think? I'm feed up with surly kids blocking the pavements, dropping litter, shouting, and straggling across the road regardless of the traffic.[/p][/quote]I think you are generalising students, being a student myself I get quite offended when people generalise us and assume we are all the same. Yes there are some rude people in our school but what school doesn't. I wish that people would stop Labelling everyone below 18 years of age angrybear77
  • Score: 0

6:10pm Wed 31 Mar 10

angrybear77 says...

jammer wrote:
Would a better diet improve their behaviour do you think? I'm feed up with surly kids blocking the pavements, dropping litter, shouting, and straggling across the road regardless of the traffic.
The article says "All I am asking is that they don’t serve the students after 8.25am (the start of the school day)". I noticed this and was highly amused that Mr Morris had not told you that he has also been preventing children buying from the shop BEFORE the start of school, I know this as i myself have been told to return items I bought by Mr Morris. In addition Mr Morris has also be confiscating Food Bought at sainsburys if you are seen eating it in the playground.
Stopping children buying food after the start of school is pointless as only about ten people out of the whole school hop the gate to go to the shop each day
[quote][p][bold]jammer[/bold] wrote: Would a better diet improve their behaviour do you think? I'm feed up with surly kids blocking the pavements, dropping litter, shouting, and straggling across the road regardless of the traffic.[/p][/quote]The article says "All I am asking is that they don’t serve the students after 8.25am (the start of the school day)". I noticed this and was highly amused that Mr Morris had not told you that he has also been preventing children buying from the shop BEFORE the start of school, I know this as i myself have been told to return items I bought by Mr Morris. In addition Mr Morris has also be confiscating Food Bought at sainsburys if you are seen eating it in the playground. Stopping children buying food after the start of school is pointless as only about ten people out of the whole school hop the gate to go to the shop each day angrybear77
  • Score: 0

7:13pm Wed 31 Mar 10

natalie89 says...

Everyone has a RIGHT to Choice. It's obvious here that the school just isn't giving enough choice to these kids. When I was at school i remember having a healthy section and a *unhealthy* section in the canteen. If I saw the fruit just sitting there it wouldn't interest me in the slightest to grab some of the healthy stuff, so instead I had something more filling, more tasty and less time consuming rather than peeling a banana or orange. If schools want to promote healthy eating, I would suggest maybe putting fruit into sealed plastic tubs or something, like supermarkets do because its alot more easier to eat it out of a tub than peeling the fruit. Fruit does not appeal to most teens because fruit is just plain, maybe educating them on maintaining a healthy lifestyle would be appropriate and showing them pictures or videos of what unhealthy living can make you look like in the future and how the fat attacks the body. Seems to me that this head teacher can't blame himself for the actions of the children at HIS school so he blames the nearest supermarket.
Everyone has a RIGHT to Choice. It's obvious here that the school just isn't giving enough choice to these kids. When I was at school i remember having a healthy section and a *unhealthy* section in the canteen. If I saw the fruit just sitting there it wouldn't interest me in the slightest to grab some of the healthy stuff, so instead I had something more filling, more tasty and less time consuming rather than peeling a banana or orange. If schools want to promote healthy eating, I would suggest maybe putting fruit into sealed plastic tubs or something, like supermarkets do because its alot more easier to eat it out of a tub than peeling the fruit. Fruit does not appeal to most teens because fruit is just plain, maybe educating them on maintaining a healthy lifestyle would be appropriate and showing them pictures or videos of what unhealthy living can make you look like in the future and how the fat attacks the body. Seems to me that this head teacher can't blame himself for the actions of the children at HIS school so he blames the nearest supermarket. natalie89
  • Score: 0

10:34pm Wed 31 Mar 10

mrslish says...

i dont believe that niel morris has any right to dictate what these children eat and where they get the food from unless they are ditching class to do it. yes i agree with healthy eating but i also agree with freedom of choice or do we not live in a democracy any more? my child attends cwlc and has also told me of teachers stood at sainsburys doors b efore school, food confiscation etc and its outrageous when there are other issues that need addressing first. no, not all the kids are unruly and improperly dressed but spend just half an hour at home time and you will see some fine examples of the ones that are-look a bit closer to home for keeping up standards mr morris ,there are some things you cant blame on a can of pop and a bag of crisps
i dont believe that niel morris has any right to dictate what these children eat and where they get the food from unless they are ditching class to do it. yes i agree with healthy eating but i also agree with freedom of choice or do we not live in a democracy any more? my child attends cwlc and has also told me of teachers stood at sainsburys doors b efore school, food confiscation etc and its outrageous when there are other issues that need addressing first. no, not all the kids are unruly and improperly dressed but spend just half an hour at home time and you will see some fine examples of the ones that are-look a bit closer to home for keeping up standards mr morris ,there are some things you cant blame on a can of pop and a bag of crisps mrslish
  • Score: 0

11:12pm Wed 31 Mar 10

CYNIC_AL says...

Have to agree with mrslish on this one. Hasn't Neil Morris heard of freedom of choice? If the kids are allowed off the school premises at lunchtime then what they eat and drink is up to them. Remembering back to my school days I nearly always went into town to buy my lunch. Chips, crisps, chocolate, bacon sarnies and fizzy drinks were always on the menu but it never did me any harm or affected my behaviour. I wonder, though very much doubt it, if Mr Morris tells his own staff and colleagues what they can and can't have in their lunchboxes too? A headmaster’s job is to run a school, not tell its pupils what they can or can’t eat.
Have to agree with mrslish on this one. Hasn't Neil Morris heard of freedom of choice? If the kids are allowed off the school premises at lunchtime then what they eat and drink is up to them. Remembering back to my school days I nearly always went into town to buy my lunch. Chips, crisps, chocolate, bacon sarnies and fizzy drinks were always on the menu but it never did me any harm or affected my behaviour. I wonder, though very much doubt it, if Mr Morris tells his own staff and colleagues what they can and can't have in their lunchboxes too? A headmaster’s job is to run a school, not tell its pupils what they can or can’t eat. CYNIC_AL
  • Score: 0

10:02am Thu 1 Apr 10

Me18 says...

Hes always moaning about something, let the kids do what they want out of school time you look after your kids and everyone looks after their own, such a control freak!!
Hes always moaning about something, let the kids do what they want out of school time you look after your kids and everyone looks after their own, such a control freak!! Me18
  • Score: 0

2:39pm Sun 4 Apr 10

DarrenM says...

angrybear77 wrote:
jammer wrote:
Would a better diet improve their behaviour do you think? I'm feed up with surly kids blocking the pavements, dropping litter, shouting, and straggling across the road regardless of the traffic.
The article says "All I am asking is that they don’t serve the students after 8.25am (the start of the school day)". I noticed this and was highly amused that Mr Morris had not told you that he has also been preventing children buying from the shop BEFORE the start of school, I know this as i myself have been told to return items I bought by Mr Morris. In addition Mr Morris has also be confiscating Food Bought at sainsburys if you are seen eating it in the playground.
Stopping children buying food after the start of school is pointless as only about ten people out of the whole school hop the gate to go to the shop each day
Hmmm taking property off people, this sounds like theft to me, someone wants to call the local police farce, with an open and shut case like that, I'd be willing to bet they couldn't wait to lead Mr Morris out in handcuffs.
[quote][p][bold]angrybear77[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]jammer[/bold] wrote: Would a better diet improve their behaviour do you think? I'm feed up with surly kids blocking the pavements, dropping litter, shouting, and straggling across the road regardless of the traffic.[/p][/quote]The article says "All I am asking is that they don’t serve the students after 8.25am (the start of the school day)". I noticed this and was highly amused that Mr Morris had not told you that he has also been preventing children buying from the shop BEFORE the start of school, I know this as i myself have been told to return items I bought by Mr Morris. In addition Mr Morris has also be confiscating Food Bought at sainsburys if you are seen eating it in the playground. Stopping children buying food after the start of school is pointless as only about ten people out of the whole school hop the gate to go to the shop each day[/p][/quote]Hmmm taking property off people, this sounds like theft to me, someone wants to call the local police farce, with an open and shut case like that, I'd be willing to bet they couldn't wait to lead Mr Morris out in handcuffs. DarrenM
  • Score: 0
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