Mum Outraged Over Child's Ridiculously Strict School Packed Lunch Guidelines
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A mum has been left feeling "belittled" by her son's primary school's strict lunchbox requirements.
Jennifer Louise Ireton, 30, was preparing for her little one Robin, four, to start reception at his new school when she received the outrageous list of guidelines for her son's packed lunches.
The guidelines - which the school stated is to ensure pupils are provided with "healthy and nutritious food" similar to the now-regulated school dinners - listed the foods and drinks that are allowed and not allowed in packed lunches.
The extensive list makes some high demands of parents including asking them to provide only homemade sausage rolls and cakes, oily fish - such as salmon, mackerel or tuna - and nuts, seeds and vegetables.
Jennifer, from Axminster, Exeter, says she's now having to spend an extra £25 per week on Robin's school lunches to adhere to the rules.
The mum-of-two, who says she felt "condescended" by the guidelines, took to Facebook to ask other parents what they made of the lunch box demands.
"You are not allowed to bring up your own children how you wish any more," one commented.
However, another person argued: "They are just trying to keep the kids happy and healthy".
Jennifer said: "He's just started school and when I first received the guidelines, I felt condescended to.
"It seems unnecessary to tell parents exactly what they should be putting in their lunch boxes - we all try and feed our kids healthy stuff. It's very dictated.
"I would normally just feed them a sandwich, packet of crisps, veggie sticks and then a chocolate bar as a treat at home.
"It's a lot of pressure; it gives me a lot of anxiety knowing they will take food off the kids if it doesn't fit the requirements.
"Robin has a nut allergy but there are no restrictions on nuts which is unusual and worrying.
"If I had the time, I would bake cakes and sausage rolls but I have an 18-month-old toddler that I need to look after, as well as other household chores".
Jennifer, is a full-time mum who lives with her husband Matthew, who works as an industrial waste operative. The mum-of-two says she but struggles to fulfil the lunchbox requirements on a low income.
She added: "We're spending £5 a day on his school lunch which really does add up.
"We have to get a variety of different ingredients and it's difficult to plan everyday.
"The lunchboxes are my responsibility so my husband has left it up to me but he also found the guidelines very condescending".