View Full Version : LA Schools to Vote on Banning Soda

08-26-2002, 08:06 PM
LA Schools to Vote on Banning Soda
Sun Aug 25, 8:23 PM ET
By ERICA WERNER, Associated Press Writer

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Hoping to combat childhood obesity, the nation's second-largest school district is expected to ban the sale of soft drinks at its 677 campuses.

The sale of soda is already prohibited at elementary schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District, and the school board is set to vote Tuesday to extend the ban to the district's approximately 200 middle and high schools.

"This is the right thing to do for children," said board member Julie Korenstein, one of three co-sponsors. "There is an obesity epidemic in the United States today nationally, and there is a tremendous rise in childhood diabetes."

"Whatever children do outside of our schools, that's obviously up to parents and families, but we don't feel we need to contribute to it any longer," she said.

Although educators and legislators have long grappled with how to promote student health, few districts have restricted soft drink sales. Texas is the only state where soft drink sales are banned during lunch at all public schools.

In banning the sales, however, the district would take away a source of revenue; profits from sodas fund student activities, generating an annual average of $39,000 per high school and $14,000 per middle school.

"When it is time for us to have dances and we don't have enough money, we rely on money from vending machines," 17-year-old Kenneth Raymond, a senior at Dorsey High School, told the Los Angeles Times. "Even at pep rallies, we need to pay for our deejays. The school isn't going to pay for that."

Board member Marlene Canter, one of the measure's sponsors, said the district would make up the funding from other sources including sales of non-carbonated beverages.

Gov. Gray Davis ( news - web sites) signed a law last year banning sodas in elementary schools that goes into effect in January 2004, but a proposal to phase out soft drink sales in all public schools failed to clear a state Senate committee in May.

Health advocates applaud the pending action at the district, which serves 748,000 students. In addition to the three sponsors, two other board members have said they support the motion, suggesting it will have more than the four of seven votes necessary for passage Tuesday.

Childhood obesity is causing increasing concern among health professionals, and soft drinks share the blame. Fourteen percent of children ages 6 through 19 are classified as obese or overweight, almost three times as many as in the 1960s.

The motion before the board Tuesday would ban all sales of carbonated drinks during school hours by January 2004. Still permitted would be water, milk, beverages with at least 50 percent fruit juice and sports drinks with less than 42 grams of sugar per 20-ounce serving.

Sean McBride, spokesman for the National Soft Drink Association, criticized the board's proposed action.

"We are being singled out for a very complex problem," he told the Times.

"The one thing you simply cannot ignore in this is the role of a sedentary lifestyle... This is about the couch, not about the can."


08-26-2002, 08:09 PM
Man, that's gonna be a real kick in the sales if it happens. Will they go health or $$?

What do you guys think of this issue?

What do you guys think they will do?

08-26-2002, 09:15 PM
I think they will carry Cocio!

Energy Drinks
08-26-2002, 09:34 PM
I guess they will have to bring their own soda from home from now on.

08-27-2002, 10:07 AM
I can remember that my elementary school wouldn't even let us bring our own soda. It's funny, I was just discussing that with my mom the other day. But, I think it's kind of stupid not to let kids drink what they want.

Why don't they try serving edible lunches instead of telling everyone what they can and can't do? I would have to think that there are plenty of much larger problems in LA schools than soda. Maybe they could try to break up gangs or do something about teenage pregnancy. Taking soda away isn't going to solve anything.

08-27-2002, 01:25 PM
This is the kind of thing that happens when we allow people who lack wisdom to get themselves into positions of authority. We have this same problem all over government today. Our politicians tend to be some of the greatest fools who have ever lived. I hope that is not representative of the people who vote for them or put them in power. They have done the same thing to soda machines here in schools in Maryland. You may find that the people who are backing that have something to gain by removing soda from schools. Or they are trying to hurt the people who stock it there. Someone has a personal agenda they are trying to push I bet. Get those people out of positions of authority before they do things that really hurt you!

08-27-2002, 04:04 PM
Does anybody know if it passed?

Anways I'm not too strong about this issue but I agree let the kids do what they want. I always buy 12 packs myself and bring them from home but if kids wanna buy pop at school let them. Sometimes I will pick up a PowerAID after gym or something, who are they to say I cant? Oh well. LA needs the money I bet too. I have heard war stories about their schools....maybe they should encourage soda sales so that they can rake in the dough? ;)


08-28-2002, 01:52 AM
It passed...those dictators did it..


08-28-2002, 08:24 PM
All they did was make thier schools poorer. My mom is a teacher and im a student I know what its like we NEED their money to survive. I wish it wasnt needed but it is. I hope the LA public schools feel good for taking education down a bar. Isnt education whats its all about?


08-28-2002, 08:49 PM
Look at the lost fund per school!!! $39,000 per high school and $14,000 per middle school. Thats alot of paper and pencils.

-Avery Lund


By LOUINN LOTA, Associated Press Writer

LOS ANGELES (AP) - The board of the nation's second-largest school district voted unanimously to extend the ban on carbonated soft drinks to all its schools in an effort to combat childhood obesity.

AP Photo

An audience of about 100 people burst into applause as the ban was adopted after 2 hours of debate Tuesday night. It will take effect in January 2004.

Board member Julie Korenstein, who co-sponsored the measure, said it was needed to fight obesity among students. But a soda industry official complained that banning drinks isn't the solution.

"Physical education and physical activity are by far, more important in combating obesity than banning soft drinks from students' diets," said Sean McBride, a spokesman for the National Soft Drink Association.

He added: "In the end, this is really about the couch and not the can."

Los Angeles Unified District, which has 748,000 students on its 677 campuses, already prohibited carbonated drink sales at elementary schools. The new measure extends the ban to the district's approximately 200 middle and high schools. It only takes effect during school hours.

Still permitted during school hours are water, milk, beverages with at least 50 percent fruit juice and sports drinks with less than 42 grams of sugar per 20-ounce serving.

Many Los Angeles Unified schools rely on soda sales to fund student activities such as sports and field trips. Sodas sold in vending machines and student stores generate an annual average profit of $39,000 per high school and $14,000 per middle school.

In California, an estimated 30 percent of children are overweight or at risk of being overweight, according to the California Center for Public Health Advocacy.

A study last year by Massachusetts researchers concluded that drinking sugar-sweetened soft drinks increased the chance of childhood obesity. Some other studies have failed to find any link.

08-29-2002, 02:08 AM
They'll never cure obesity by doing that. Those who want to drink soda will bring it with them. However, I'm glad it went through because since the big soda companies are controlling schools & universities like the Soviets controlled Eastern Europe, giving them the boot is refreshing. Give a little business to the surrounding shops and cafes who can buy whatever the demand dictates rather than what the Red Crew dictates.

Of course notice that the idiots who passed this are 'allowing' fruit juice drinks... hello, same calories as soda, duh! Is it calories or food value or what? They are completely blind but if it breaks down the control of the megacompanies, consider it a blessing in disguise.

08-30-2002, 01:07 AM
The exclusive contracts are pure BS. But still schools need the money. For once I'm on the same side as the big guys.


08-30-2002, 02:42 AM
If all the schools' money come from soda companies, then fine; abolish my income tax and property tax once and for all. Then they can drink their aluminum crap all they want. Charge me so much as a cent and I say, out with all of the big guys and their plastic and aluminum swill.

08-30-2002, 03:02 PM
Danny I think you bring up a fine point but my question is: Is the LA tax payer willing to cover the diffrence? I doubt most people are.


08-31-2002, 02:23 AM
Lay off superfluous government workers and use the savings to help the schools.

I also think it should be mandatory to send all US kids to a third world country as an exchange student for a minimum of one year so they all get a clue about life and a basic work ethic.

But hey, what do I know???

08-31-2002, 05:06 PM
Danny- Actually I think if more people thought that way there might be alot of change for good around here. I'm not contesting that there is other way to get money to schools I'm just pointing out that the Coke/Pepsi deal is money earned by schools that doesnt have to come from the tax payer who is plenty overburdened already. I wish the schools diddnt need the money but they do. As for the work ethic, that is an excellent idea.


09-01-2002, 10:28 AM
This brings up a question: Do all of the high schools that carry soft drinks only carry one brand. I know my high school carries Coca-Cola, and only Coke. Why can't Pepsi and RC Cola, or some other tertiary soda brand have a vending machine or two to go along with Coke? I bet SoBe could make a good profit if they invested a machine into a high school or middle school.

09-01-2002, 01:07 PM
If the schools are selling soft drinks and they do not allow a distributor of products which kids or students like to sell to the cafeteria/store/etc because of a control deal by Coke or Pepsi, then that school is teaching kids to accept control over genuine capitalism and this is un-American in my opinion. Having a soda company strongarm out the competition by paying off either officials or the government or whatever is to teach people that a dictatorship is acceptable if the price is right. I don't personally think it matters if kids/students drink sodas; if their diets are an issue then their parents should give them a healthy bag lunch and no money. Problem solved there. But I've had my products in a university store before and experienced incredible success until a Red Crew or a Blue Enforcer has come in and replaced quality beverages with their plastic junk without doing a blind taste test or having the students vote. Wrong, wrong, wrong.

09-01-2002, 01:29 PM
About childhood obesity.... It sounds like the sodas are being banned because the parents want someone to blame. They want to point the finger and say, "They're the reason my kids are fat! Not because I feed them Twinkies 3 times a day! Not because I give my kids fast food and TV dinners instead of healthy meals! It's the soda companies that are responsible!" If they want kids to slim down, maybe they could spend a little more money on food for the cafeteria and get decent foods in there that aren't stuffed with chemicals and preservatives. Hell, cut deals with the big soda companies. Let them compete MONTHLY on who gets what brand put into their schools. Get them to outbid each other on who gets to dominate for a semester or something. Then use the excess cash to improve the lunches, which a lot of kids really rely on as their most important meal of the day. Use the soda companies competition for good, not evil.

09-01-2002, 06:25 PM
If they did it in California they will soon do it in Maryland! (I can tell you about Maryland, I live here!) These seem to be the two States in the nation where lack of common sense and ignorance have replaced thought and wisdom the fastest. (except maybe NewYork and Florida). These same people who applauded the soda ban will soon be wondering, and complaining, about how they will fund the programs that were once funded by the soda sales. They won't want their taxes raised! They will expect someone else to pay for it. They will expect the government to step in and pay them for their stupidity! These people, I can't figure them out, they dig themselves into a hole and think they are climbing up a great mountain. Then when they finaly, if they ever, realize they are in a hole, they blame it on someone else and think others are responsible for pulling them out of it. I agree with S.S. about how people should spend time in 3rd world countries. It changes your perspective, let me tell you. I spent two years in Jamaica. It changed mine! I guess that is enough ranting for now.

09-02-2002, 04:54 PM
I'm proud to say that last year I led the fight for choice when it comes to soda. Sure its only choice of the big 3 but its still better than just Pepsi. I got in a super heated dispute with the Pepsi exec. at the school board meaeting. In the students got to vote and 85% or so voted for choice. Also the school store has begun selling Jolt and Afri-Cola. So I feel this is a bit of a victory for choice. But the fact remains that Pepsi really wants this district and they will do just about anything to get it. From what I have heard they are offerin about 3ยข more per unit and 15% more for the whole district. But they are gonna win. Not till I'm gone atleast! :D


07-04-2005, 11:57 PM
I think all sodas should be banned from schools.

Kids should not be consuming this much sugar.

Why not pour a quart of raw cane sugar in their mouths when they walk in the door for school each day?