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State officials reconsider allowing homemade food at school parties

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State officials reconsider allowing homemade food at school parties
By Ryan Quinn, The Charleston Gazette-Mail

The West Virginia Department of Education now is proposing allowing homemade food to be brought into public schools to be shared for “special events,” a reversal of its previous proposal to keep banning sharing such foods, and it’s seemingly going further by proposing allowing homemade food and non-nutritional food to be provided as snacks.

In another reversal, the department now is proposing to maintain the ban on caffeine in schools, after previously proposing to lift it.

Other than that, the department has maintained its proposal to remove the state’s existing nutrition standards for school meals and snacks and instead tie the state requirements to the federal minimum requirements.

These moves come ahead of a possible state Board of Education vote this week to approve the department’s now-amended proposed changes to Policy 4321.1.

In June, the state school board voted to put out for public comment an initial version of proposed changes to that policy.

The proposed changes included allowing caffeine, nixing the state’s existing nutrition standards, tying the state requirements to the federal minimum requirements and putting into state policy the department’s March decision to allow students to eat non-nutritional food during “classroom celebrations” — if their county school boards also allow them to.

Read more here.