During his visit to Bronx Delta, Mayor Adams also had a chance to partake in vegan Friday — part of his initiative to promote healthier eating among students. The premise of vegan Fridays makes sense: introducing children to healthy food options at a young age in hopes that they will make healthier eating decisions as they grow. However, as one Twitter user put it, “All vegan Fridays are not created equal.”
One of the mayor’s staff members, Rachel Atcheson, shared a photo on Twitter of Adams sitting at a table with Bronx Delta students alongside photos of a colorful salad bar and appetizing plate of food. But several users replied to the Tweet with photos of their children’s actual school lunch, which looked nothing like the colorful plates being shared. One teacher shared a photo of a sloppy plate of pasta with tomato sauce, a side of chickpeas, two pieces of cauliflower and a single sad piece of broccoli. “This was what my students were served. There is no salad bar. I dread Fridays because the students leave hungry and upset. As a citywide special ed school, many do not get off the bus until 5:30 p.m. This may be the last meal of the weekend,” she shared.
So what is the issue? The principal at my youngest daughter’s school told us that the first vegan Friday back in February was a complete fail because the cafeteria staff did not receive all of the ingredients in time to create the planned dish. The result? A plate containing only … beans. And the peanut butter and jelly sandwich option that the DOE claims is available? Our school is nut-free due to allergies, so that’s out also. Luckily, my 10-year-old likes hummus and has eaten the heart-shaped pretzels with hummus offered as a meal when she doesn’t like the day’s lunch.
How has your child’s school been with their vegan Friday meals? Tweet us at @The_Unmuted and tag @nycschools so the DOE is aware of any issues with food inventory.