Cheeseballs, Doritos offered under school's healthy snack progra - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Cheeseballs, Doritos offered under school's healthy snack program

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Gilead Hill Elementary School in Hebron (WFSB file photo) Gilead Hill Elementary School in Hebron (WFSB file photo)
A photo of the original letter sent to parents last week (http://newbostonpost.com) A photo of the original letter sent to parents last week (http://newbostonpost.com)
HEBRON, CT (WFSB) -

Cheeseballs, a variety of ice cream, and other items you wouldn't necessarily categorize as nutritious are just some of the options offered under a school district's healthy snack program.

Now, school leaders in Hebron are clarifying some controversy that was caused by a letter sent home to parents regarding the healthy snack options available for students.

On Friday, the district’s food services director sent a letter home to parents with details about the Healthy Snack Program at Gilead Hill Elementary School.

It stated that snacks will be available for purchase starting on Sept. 19, and range from “Cheetos Puffs, Cheeseballs, Doritos, and of course a variety of ice cream.”

The letter went on to say, “All of our snacks are within the nutritional guidelines of the Health Snack Program.”

The original letter did not specify other healthy snack options, like fruits and vegetables, but Superintendent of Schools Timothy Van Tasel published a follow-up letter, stating that the snacks listed are not the only ones that are made available to students.

“We recognize that chips and ice cream do not have the nutritional value of fresh fruits and vegetables, which is why we offer a selection of all of these items,” Van Tasel said in the letter.

He continued on to say “Please note that any child who purchases a lunch in the Hebron Public Schools is required to receive a well-balanced meal that meets specific nutritional criteria.”

The school menus are reviewed by the Bureau of Health, Nutrition, Family Services and Adult Education every three years, Van Tasel said, adding that last December, the district received “high marks” regarding the current offerings for students.

The additional snack offerings also do not take place of lunch, Van Tasel said, but is something the district is mandated to provide. Students and their parents are given the choice to participate or not.

To read the superintendent’s full letter, click here.

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