Lunchtime

Supervision

  • Adult Supervisors wearing orange vest are responsible for the supervision of students during lunchtime.  They will assist students with whatever is needed.  Indoor and outdoor supervision is provided from 11:40-12:25.
  • Student Junior Supervisors in Grades 4, 5 and 6 wearing blue vests are available to assist students at lunchtime.  (eg. opening items, doing up zippers)
  • Drop-In services are available for students who are not enrolled in the lunchroom program. The cost is $5.00 per day.  Payment must be made to the office on or before the day the student stays for lunch.
  • Parents must sign-in at the office and get a visitor’s pass if they want to see their child during the lunch hour.
  • Students enrolled in the lunchroom program must be signed out in the office by parents before leaving the school.

Recycling/Waste/Compost

  • All garbage must be placed in the garbage bins provided.  Students will be dismissed when their area is clean.
  • There are plastic bins for garbage and recycle bins for juice boxes, water bottles and pop cans in the lunchroom.   There is a separate recycle bin for milk.
  • Green compost bins are available during lunch time.

Behaviour

  • Hats are not allowed to be worn while eating lunch inside except for school sanctioned events.
  • Students should use their indoor voices in the gym.
  • All students must raise their hand when they need help.
  • If students need to go to the washroom they must raise their hand and supervisors will give them a hallway/bathroom pass to be returned after using the bathroom.
  • Students who are not dressed appropriately for the weather conditions will be kept inside, parents will be notified.

Lunchroom Hours and Procedures

  • Eating food outside during the lunch hour is not permitted except during “Outdoor Lunch Days”.
  • Students bring their lunch to school in their backpack, clearly labelled with their name.
  • Grade 1,2 & 3 students eat from 11:40-12:03 and then go outside to play from 12:03-12:25.
    Grade 4, 5 & 6 students go outside to play from 11:40-12:03 and then eat from 12:03-12:25.
  • When grade 1, 2 and 3 students arrive to their class in the morning, they will put their lunch bag in their class lunch cart. The cart will be labelled with the teacher’s name, room and grade. At lunch time, a student in their class will take the cart to the lunchroom and students can retrieve their lunch from there.
  • Grade 4, 5, and 6 students go and get their lunch bags from their backpack when they come in for lunch at 12:03.
  • Grade 1 teachers walk students down to the gym the first week of school. Supervisors will be there to greet students and help them find a place to sit for the rest of the year.  Seating changes can be made upon request to the Lead Supervisor by a note in the agenda or contacting the lunchroom.
  • Grade 1, 2 and 3 students must make sure to bring their outdoor shoes, coat, hat, gloves, etc. to the lunchroom so that they are prepared to go outside to play after lunch.
  • Students registered in the milk program should take their milk from the milk bin when they arrive to the lunchroom.
  • After eating lunch, students in grade 1, 2 and 3 will put their lunch bag back into their classroom cart and a junior supervisor will deliver it to their classroom.  Before going home, students will take their lunch bag from the cart and put it into their backpack.

Food Choices

As stated in the Calgary Board of Education's administrative regulation regarding nutrition: The CBE supports access to healthy, nutritional food choices for students that are essential to establish an environment that is safe, caring and conducive to effective learning by ... ensuring that good nutrition is promoted both in theory and in practice. 

Elementary schools such as Westgate are required to provide food and beverages that fall into the Alberta Nutritional Guidelines' "Choose Most Often" category 100% of the time. Although this regulation refers to CBE staff and contractors we also encourage families to send healthy snack and lunch items to school with their children.

We strongly discourage parents from sending foods and beverages that contain common allergens such as peanuts and tree nuts. Some of our students will become deathly ill if they come into contact with these foods. 

Birthdays

An important day for each of our students is the day that the class celebrates their birthday! We ask that families please refrain from sending food or other items from home to celebrate birthdays. Teachers may recognize birthdays in other ways. They will not distribute to the class food or other items from home as part of the celebration. 

Allergies

We strongly discourage parents from sending foods and beverages that contain common allergens such as peanuts and tree nuts.  Some of our students will become deathly ill if they come into contact with these foods. (For more information regarding our lunchroom practices please see the Lunchroom page of our school website.)

If students are exposed to allergens they must immediately wash their hands and the surfaces they have touched. School staff will ensure that this occurs to the best of their ability. Teachers, supervisors and facility operators may not be aware that students have brought food with allergens to school or that students have been exposed to them.

Nut & Peanut Allergy

Please help us with our nut and peanut allergy students. We have several children who have severe allergies to these products.

What is Anaphylaxis?

Anaphylaxis is the medical term for allergic shock. An allergic reaction to peanuts and nuts can be any or all of the following: tingling in the mouth, hives, itching, flushed face, and body, swelling of eyes, lips, face, and tongue, tightness in the throat, mouth, and chest, difficulty breathing and swallowing, wheezing, coughing, choking, vomiting and stomach upset, dizziness and unsteadiness, loss of consciousness, coma and death. Some individuals can react to ingesting traces of peanuts or other substances. Some will even react to touching nuts or peanuts, or even a surface they have been in contact with. 

What’s So Special About Peanut Butter?

The particular problems with peanut butter come from its popularity with children and its sticky texture. While young children with allergies quickly learn how to avoid it, peanut butter June easily get left behind on desks, door handles, etc.

Why Not Just Ban Peanut Products at School?

The Calgary Board of Education policy reflects the fact that trying to ban peanuts, nuts and related products from schools is unrealistic. It would be impossible to demand or guarantee compliance. Even with complete co-operation, it’s too easy to make a mistake, given the wide range of affected foods. A ban could give staff, parents, other students, and most importantly the allergic child, a false sense of security. It is important we work with these children to learn to be responsible in a world that is not peanut free.

What is the School Doing?

At Westgate, children with identified severe allergies are known to our staff. Families have ensured that medications are on site, and staff have been trained to recognize symptoms and administer medication. Parents are asked to avoid peanuts etc. from classroom snacks. In the lunchroom program, children with allergies to nut products June eat at a designated table if that is what their family desires. When students eat lunch in classrooms all desks are wiped down before classes resume.

At Westgate, student awareness is critical. Our students know the potential health risk nut products have for some students. Most families avoid bringing nut products in their school lunches out of consideration for others, and to minimize the risk for young children learning to deal with a life threatening allergy. 

We ask students that do bring peanut butter or other nut products to let their lunchroom supervisor and their teacher know about the food to ensure that hands and all contacted surfaces are thoroughly cleaned. 

Keeping Kids Safe at Lunch     

The school has designated tables where students with allergies may sit if the family chooses. These are our practices for these tables:

  • Two tables for students with allergies exist; one in the hallway and one in the gym. These areas are treated the same regarding cleaning.
  • Students that sit at these tables cannot bring foods that fall into the current allergy list. This list is based on the students that presently sit at the table and their allergies.
  • The current list includes: peanuts, tree nuts, and pineapple.
  • The table top and seats of these tables are cleaned twice between the lunch rotation.  The cleaning cloth used is unsullied.
  • Students cannot bring a friend with them to the table.
  • Each day, the supervisor assigned to the allergy table scans the students to find faces that are unfamiliar. The supervisor then asks the child what their allergy is. If it is not food-related and the parent/guardian wants them to sit at the allergy table a note must be sent before this student can continue to sit at the allergy table. The student will be placed at a different table until the note is sent.
  • Students are not allowed to share food.
  • Students at risk of an anaphalactic reaction require a note from their parent/guardian to be allowed to sit with the larger student body instead of the allergy table.
  • Each supervisor has been trained on how to administer an Epipen, instructed by the school health nurse.
  • Any lunch supervisor may call 911 if a student requires urgent care. All lunch supervisors, both indoor and outdoor, carry a walkie-talkie that allows them to communicate with the office in case a student experiences an allergic reaction that requires urgent care and/or an Epipen. Office staff will run the student's Epipen to the supervisor if required. Epipens are kept in the office. Some students may casrry them with them.
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