On April 11th the catering company at IICS, Askur, will start providing fruit for the Secondary School students every day. Since October 2015, Askur have been providing fruit for students in Grades 7-12 every Friday morning when students in these grades enjoy an extended homeroom period. Feedback from the students about this service has been very popular, which has resulted in the decision to make the service a daily routine rather than a pleasant end to the week.

As all Secondary parents know, our teenagers are faced with a barrage of choices for snacks, most of which are far from healthy. We are all aware of studies around the world pointing to an increase in obesity and conditions related to poor choices in diet. Unfortunately, the skill of the advertisers and the unbearable pull of the artificial sweeteners in the snacks and drinks that our children are exposed to every day make it very difficult for parents to help their teenagers make healthy choices.

Our Secondary School students get incredibly hungry every day. Most of them get up very early to come to school and stay after school for activities. We need to keep them filled up throughout the day, and offering the fruit on a daily basis should go some way to alleviating the demand for less healthy options. On Fridays we have found that some students eat the fruit for breakfast; others prefer to nibble throughout the day as they walk past the containers in the various classrooms. Hopefully we will see this every day from now on.

We will also continue to promote healthy living throughout our curriculum, most notably in humanities, science, PE and guidance units in various MYP grade levels. The aim is not to dictate a particular lifestyle to our students, but to make them more aware of the impact that their choices have on their health and the world in which they live. Ideally, we would see the impact of the learning on the snack choices that they make on a daily basis at school.

Note: Primary students receive fruit at snack time daily. 
Joe Lumsden