Today’s news:

Parents protest school bake sale ban

Don’t hate on cupcakes!

That’s the message parents are sending in response to the city Department of Education’s (DOE) decision to limit the number of bake sales in public schools.

“Snack and bake sales have proven to be highly profitable,” said Cecile Iacono, president of School District 21’s Presidents Council, which is comprised of Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) and Parent Association (PA) leaders.

The revenue is used to “enhance and provide new programs” in local schools, she said.

The money is especially important since schools have lost city and state funding, Iacono noted.

“In light of the previous and upcoming budget cuts, cutting out snack sales would be detrimental to all of us,” she said.

New DOE regulations allow PA and PTA groups to hold bake sales once a month after lunch time. They can also sell desserts after 6 p.m. on weekdays.

The changes, which also include the removal of sugary snacks from school vending machines, are meant to combat childhood obesity.

But Iacono said, “Banning snack sales is not an effective solution to the problem of obesity. There are better ways to improve student health at school, including more physical activity and gym time, making more fresh, healthy foods available in the cafeteria, and teaching nutrition in schools.”

District 21’s Presidents Council presented a resolution stating its position at the local Community Education Council’s (CEC) recent meeting. After insistence from parents in the audience, the CEC agreed to support the resolution.

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