BEC: Dear schools. Stay out of my daughter's lunchbox.

Carrot sticks and hummus – this is what your kid’s lunch box is supposed to look like now. Wait, are those crackers wholemeal?


That’s it. My mind is made up. Should anything happen to me or my husband Brad, I want Julie Goodwin to raise my children.

Which may come as a surprise to my husband. And my mother. And, you know, Julie Goodwin since she and I don’t technically know each other. At all. On any level.

But she looks like she’s from my tribe. And frankly her recent views on school lunchboxes nudged the uber-wise Kate Hunter out of the number one spot for guardianship.

This week, Julie came out fighting against the Lunchbox Police in our kindergartens and primary schools and I, for one, couldn’t sign up to Team Julie fast enough.

The Masterchef winner believes that schools are too rigid and have too much of a say in what parents can pack in thier children’s lunchbox.

Julie, I hear you sister.  My daughter Ava started kindy last week. It’s a beautiful kindy. And the teachers are just so lovely but being told that I was banned from packing my daughter any cakes or biscuits or anything sweet came as a bit of a shock.

Anyway, back to Jules. Here’s what she had to say in The Telegraph:

Julie Goodwin

“I don’t think there is anything wrong with a little treat,” Goodwin said. “There is a rating system in schools these days and it is becoming a very policed state.

“Not every child has a weight problem, and not every child has ADD and I think it is a very cookie-cutter approach to say every child should eat the same.”

She said parents should be able to tailor their lunches to the needs of their child.

Look I’m not having a go at schools. Okay, that’s a lie, I am.

But I think teachers have enough to do without policing our kids lunchboxes. And I understand how these “carrot sticks and hommus for snacks please” rules came into being.  As parents we have dropped the baton and too many of us have been packing complete crap (and only complete crap) into our kids lunchboxes.  But I’m with Julie in thinking blanket bans are a bit over the top.


I raised the issue with a few friends of mine and they started nervously whispering tales of jam sandwiches being sent home with terse notes. Now kids can’t have jam sandwiches?  What. The. Hell?

“If I want to pack a gingerbread man in Ava’s lunchbox, shouldn’t I be able to make that call?”

When I was at primary school one girl I knew took SWEETENED CONDENSED MILK to school for morning tea. That’s right.

Okay, that’s totally disgusting and wrong on many levels but still … she did. And we all begged her for a taste. Kids took roll ups and chocolate Yo-gos and a slice of homemade butter cake.  They ordered cream buns at the tuckshop.

And then, guess what?  We walked home from school or from the bus stop. And we played outside. Maybe that’s the difference.

I want to stress that I have no issue with the ‘no peanut butter’ rule. Life-threatening allergies are a whole different matter. But I’m just saying, if I want to pack a gingerbread man in Ava’s lunchbox for morning tea, shouldn’t I – as her, you know FREAKING PARENT, be able to make that call?

Kate Hunter assures me that things loosen up once the kids get to high school and that her son Ben could take Bacardi Breezers and fried bacon sandwiches in his lunchbox and no one would care.

But for now, primary school lunchboxes are being monitored more closely than the Duchess of Cambridge’s stomach.

So, what do you guys think?  Am I being a brazen lunchbox hussy?  Should I be grateful that there are checks and balances in place to safeguard our kids’ health?  What did you take for lunch in primary school?   Talk to me, people.

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