July 9, 2014 |
AT FIRST, Philadelphia teacher LeShawna Coleman believed she'd be meeting with Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to discuss education issues. Late last week, she was informed that things had changed: Coleman would be having a luncheon meeting with President Obama instead. Coleman, who as a teacher coach with the district works with teachers in classrooms, was one of four educators to have an "honest, open conversation" with Obama in the White House. Duncan was also present. "It's a once-in-a-lifetime experience," Coleman said.
July 9, 2014 |
Philadelphia teacher LeShawna Coleman had some interesting lunch company Wednesday: President Obama. Coleman, a 13-year Philadelphia School District veteran, teacher coach, and English as a Second Language teacher, had expected to travel to Washington for a U.S. Department of Education event about teacher equity. (The Education Department introduced a program Monday to get more strong teachers in the nation's poorest schools.) But last week, she learned she was one of four teachers nationwide chosen to lunch with the president and Education Secretary Arne Duncan.
June 27, 2014 |
Saying stricter federal nutrition guidelines are too much to swallow, the Unionville-Chadds Ford School District has decided to remove its 1,300 high school students from the program that is to go into effect next school year. In deciding last week that the students would not join the 31 million across the country who get free or reduced-price lunches through the National School Lunch Program, the district said its own food policies were healthy enough for its high schoolers. The district's middle school and four elementary schools will still participate.
June 18, 2014 |
First, the nation agreed that its children are too heavy and unhealthy. Then, the federal government - Democrats and Republicans together channeling scientific research - hammered out ideas to reduce fat, calories, and salt in school meals. Now, that harmonious effort is splintering as a food fight embroiling Congress, health professionals, the White House, and even cafeteria workers threatens to rage through the summer and disrupt lunch period come September. In an odd twist, the School Nutrition Association (SNA)
February 21, 2014 |
Students in Penny Greenberg's culinary-arts classes have a term for the hoagies, pizza, and chicken nuggets served in the cafeteria. "They call it 'freebie food,' " said Greenberg, who teaches at Dobbins Career and Technical Education High School. Almost all of its students are eligible for free lunches - and although some think the food is OK, others apparently feel they're getting what they've paid for. In the next month or so, though, the menu at Dobbins will get a special addition: Louisiana-style spicy chicken with collard greens and served with red beans and rice.
February 1, 2014 |
New Jersey has shown marked increases in getting low-income children to eat breakfast in school, while Pennsylvania has demonstrated slow improvement in serving the meals. That's the word from the Food Research and Action Center (FRAC), which released its School Breakfast Scorecard this month. Based in Washington, FRAC is the leading antihunger advocacy group in America. Throughout the country, school-breakfast participation by low-income students is calculated by measuring the number of children eating breakfast compared with those eating lunch.
January 29, 2014 |
JOSEPH LIGAMBI, the 74-year-old reputed Philadelphia mob boss, hasn't been convicted of a crime, but he's been locked up at the Federal Detention Center since May 2011, held without bail while awaiting trial on a massive racketeering indictment. Yesterday, after a 13-year investigation and two lengthy trials, the government threw in the towel, filing a one-sentence motion to drop all charges. Both juries had failed to convict Ligambi of racketeering conspiracy, gambling, loan-sharking, theft of medical benefits or obstruction of justice.
November 21, 2013
The soup days are upon us, and few bowls satisfy the craving quite like hearty chicken soup. Le Pain Quotidien delivers an appealing update to the ancient French standard called pot-au-feu, a wintery one-pot stew of root veggies, broth, and meat. True to the Belgian bread chain's sleek organic aesthetic, this rendition is neat and tidy rather than rustic. But I still love all the veggies that fill this bowl, from turnips and leeks to garbanzo beans, carrots, and cauliflower, alongside the tender chunks of chicken seasoned with herbes de Provence.
September 6, 2013 |
School lunch . The words evoke mental images of water-bloated frozen pizza, sugary fruit-flavored beverages, irradiated meat slabs, and plastic-wrapped lunch "kits. " For most parents, the prospect is downright horrifying, and perhaps especially so when said parents are culinary professionals. It's not just the gastronomic atrocities involved but the industrial-grade ingredients that give chefs pause. "When I think of my son eating lunch at school, I have a lot of concerns about where the food comes from and who's making it," says Joe Cicala of Le Virtu in South Philly.
August 16, 2013 |
IT'S A parental terror about as universal as stepping on a Lego barefoot: packing kids' lunches for school and day care. This month's Top Cook, Anita Garimella Andrews, has faced and conquered it. She had to. Because of the family's schedule, she packs three meals a day and two snacks for her 16-month-old daughter, Sanaa. "I think moms who have children who go to day care have similar things to think about as those of school-aged children," said Andrews. "What can I pack that's easy to do, healthful, will go over well and minimize mess?"