View Full Version : "No outside food" policy in Texas
04-04-2008, 08:02 AM
I live in Texas, and Texas minimum requirements for operating licensed child care say that parents may provide food for their children after they turn 12 month, if they sign a release paper.
I checked multiple day cares, and they do not allow ANY food brought from outside including drinks in cups. Only doctor's statement that says "child needs special diet" can work.
Caregivers justify "No outside food" policy by saying that other kids may grab my child's food, and they can be allergic to it. Or, they even say that state requires them not to allow food from outside (It is not correct) !
Another words, may I bring to the child care giver's attention the State regulation and insist on bringing my own food? Anyone had any experience?
May a local caregiver's policy overpower the State regulation? If the State says "Parent may do...", can local say "No"?
05-09-2008, 12:06 PM
I have a daycare, and I do not allow food from home, except for infant food. There are reasons for this. Allergies are one. Also meals in daycare have to be well balanced. Nutritios and balanced meals are a requirement of the government food progam. And some parents don't get that. Sending sack lunches with a sandwich, cookies, and koolaid. So, it is easier to say 'no food from home' than to tell parents what needs to be served for lunch and what can not be brought for lunch.
Hope this helps you to understand.
05-16-2008, 01:25 AM
I too prefer that parents don't bring outside food. It prevents arguing among the kids, and just overall makes meals easier for me. Now if a parent wants to bring something to share for everyone, that is fine.
I you insist on bringing your child's food, and they providers policy is no outside food, you just may not be a good fit for that childcare.
Just like any job/business, there are rules placed for a reason. I am sure your job has rules and you don't question your boss on them. As a provider, we have to have rules and abide by them to prevent problems.
07-07-2008, 09:12 AM
You all have made good points with how children will fight over others food, may not receive healthy meals or may be allergic. Please also consider that some daycares are on a Federal Food program and these programs often state that outside food cannot not be brought in. If auditors come into the center and see that outside food is being served, they reserve the right to terminate the food program in that center. This would put added stress and expenses on the center if they lost this funding. If they are not on the food program, it is still easier and more fair for all children to receive the same foods at mealtime.
07-08-2008, 10:15 AM
My daughter attends an in-home daycare where I am expected to pack her lunch each day. For me this is a more suitable arrangement as I am particular about the foods she eats and prefer that she have more whole foods and less processed foods...I also balance her meals with fruits/vegetables etc. In trying to find a new daycare for my daughter, I too have run into the issue of "no outside food" and thus I am left to either keep her where she is, or have her eat whatever may be on the menu in each daycare. I was actually told by one provider that she feeds the kids "food that kids like" and when I asked for examples she told me chicken nuggets, mac-n-cheese, etc.. When I asked if I may pay her the full amount but pack my daughter's lunch, I was told no.
I commend providers who provide meals to the children in their care, I know that for me to keep my daughter fed all day is no small feat...so feeding 6 or 8 hungry little ones is more than I could manage;) I also certainly understand the reasons for not allowing outside food, but it would sure be nice if we could find a "happy medium" where the parents feel comfortable with what the kids are eating and the providers are happy providing healthy, nutritious meals. I am certain that there are providers who do this very well and I plan to keep looking.
Are all licensed homes who provide meals required to follow the USDA guidelines? How does this work? Thanks for the info!
07-15-2008, 12:49 AM
Yes it is very importent to eat inside food because hte outside food always. The out side food always affect our health.
07-15-2008, 12:53 AM
It is good to eat only the inside food. Outside food always affect to our health.
07-16-2008, 08:50 PM
there are three daycare within a ten mile radius where I live and two provide meals/are on food program and one does not.
in the state of California we are provided with a form for parents who decline to participate in the child care food program. they must sign it and have it on file as well as parent providing all food for child
most providers don't want to deal with it. keep looking for someone not on the program or who doesn't provide food. it sounds easiest
07-22-2008, 07:02 PM
I have the "no outside" food policy as well-why? Because it isn't "fair"---if you bring enough for "all-" then please do so! Birthdays are a great day to do this-or a special rain day treat-I don't know of any state law that says parents can bring in food from outside the home-but I do know they state that all bottles/sippy cups be labelled-but I could be wrong. This is my business not the states. Also, if a child brings in McD's breakfast-and I'm on the STATE FOOD PROGRAM-I can't claim him on my breakfast-yet I went grocery shopping, and prepared it for the child because I didn't know he was bringing that in-when my child was in childcare-and he came home crying-that one of the providers got pizza for lunch and they got other foods-this is where I found out how "unfair" it is-that's why I have this rule-I want all children to have the same opportunities as the others. Same goes for "no toys" from home-unless it's Share Day-then parents forget Share Day-ya know? GOOD LUCK-I know it's hard on "both" sides-but "talk" it out-it's great when parents and providers work together and not against eachother-
10-08-2008, 09:53 AM
At my children's daycare they strongly discourage bringing in outside food and I completely understand for many of the reasons listed above. Ironically I now have to bring in (per daycare policy) bread, cereal, crackers, and other substitue items because my 18mo has an allergy to treenuts. All of the above mentioned items have been manufactured in a factory that process treenuts and peanuts. To date they have been unwilling to change their purchasing practices (even though there are at least two other children with the same allergies). Some of their cereal products are name brand and there are safe alternatives for my daughter in the kitchen but for some reason I still have to bring in food for her. I am starting a search for a new daycare provider.
10-08-2008, 02:34 PM
All of you have made great points. My food policy is as follows: I do provide breakfast, lunch and if needed dinner and two snacks each day at no additional charge. Parents if you prefer to pack your child's lunch please do so but i do ask that you bring there food ready to eat or already prepared. In the case of food allergies i prefer you to pack their lunch as i do not buy "special food" nor have the time to cook different meals for each child. I only cook what is on my menu.
The reason i have it this way is because i have a child that has Celiac Disease and is Vegan. So if this child gets ahold of some other childs food that contains the ingredents that she has an allergie to she can end up very, very sick. So you really have to take that into consideration before you get upset.
10-14-2008, 10:22 PM
If you actually read through the state regulations, usually there's a lot of "covering all the bases." If the state regulation says "Parents may do.." they may just be saying the state doesn't mind if you do it, not that the provider MUST give you that option. Providers make rules to suit their needs as well as the children. Keep in mind this isn't to irritate you and it's not meant to be bad for your child, it's meant to be in the best interest of everyone there. If you have different ages of children like I do, it makes it even harder. It's impossible to explain to a crying 2 year old why the 8 year old is eating something she can't have because he brought it from home and I don't have any to give her. Besides that, i've had many parents pack not so healthy things and I like to know that while they're with me, they're eating healthy.
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