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back to article Scots council: 9-yr-old lunch blogger was causing 'distress and harm'

A Scottish council have said that a nine-year-old food blogger was misrepresenting her school dinners and distressing the canteen staff, by publishing a photoblog about her lunch. The media attention caused by the photos, such as the one below was causing "distress and harm" to staff the council said. School Dinner by Glasgow …

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FAIL

Ah, the old old "lets throw petrol on the fire"

method of firefighting.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Ah, the old old "lets throw petrol on the fire"

Did anyone else immediately think "Max Payne" when they saw that plate and the girl's name?

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Anonymous Coward

or indeed

that well known survival technique of digging to get out of a hole.

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Re: or indeed

Or borrowing money to get out of debt .....

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Re: Ah, the old old "lets throw petrol on the fire"

Epic fail for the council, epic win for the girl and the charity.

This afternoon the page count had reached 2.5M and the charity had received £15K

This evening the page count has reached 3.8M and the charity has received £45K

The charity has even posted how they've received enough to go beyond the original appeal, and build a new kitchen and stock it with food for a year.

Streisand effect much.

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Anonymous Coward

No photos in the canteen

OK, so I wonder if it's now time for her to practice her drawing ability.

Or could she take the plate of food outside and take the photo *not in* the canteen.

Or how is her photoshop? Have standard photos of a plate, cheeseburger, croquette etc and stitch them together on her computer later.

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Facepalm

Re: No photos in the canteen

She should start drawing it, it would probably make the food more appealing.

So they give what looks like a 50p microwave burger, potato things, cucumber (One of her 5 a day), those horrid ice lollies.

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Re: No photos in the canteen

If I were her, I'd continue to write the blog just sans-photos.

A right shame the council has to be so idiotic about this.

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Re: No photos in the canteen

I like those lolies. It's the only thing on there I'd eat without being drunk.

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Re: No photos in the canteen

TBH for a school dinner thats not too bad. Seen a alot worse.

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Mushroom

Re: No photos in the canteen

Having now seen the blog I can see the stories have picked out the first two photographs which are the worst, some odd choices for the meals.

The marking is generally 8 out of 10 so she isn't being slanderous, I'm glad I didn't make some more remarks as after reading the blog you can clearly see they do have a good variety of food. it looks like as usual those looking for a story have deliberately picked the worst out to generate an "OMG THEY SHOULD FIRE EVERYONE" response.

So SHAME ON U REG FOR BEING A SHEEP!!

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Pirate

Re: No photos in the canteen

No photos certainly, but did they mention video?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: No photos in the canteen

As my daughter said of her school meals, they teach you (in PSE) about eating five a day, then give you a meal that makes it harder to eat 5 fruit and veg a day because there's none (or in the illustrated case, very little) in it.

I looked at it and was going to suggest someone call the NSPCC

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Holmes

Re: No photos in the canteen

Telescopic lens (paparazzzi style) to take a photo of dinner on plate whilst standing outside the canteen.

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Re: No photos in the canteen

@Captain Scarlet:

"She should start drawing it, it would probably make the food more appealing."

In one blog she did draw it because she forgot to bring her camera.

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Joke

Re: No photos in the canteen

>>SHAME ON U REG FOR BEING A SHEEP!!

Is that one with or without scrapie and will it land on a dinner plate?

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Headmaster

Re: No photos in the canteen

If you check her blog, she did draw the occasional meal when she forgot her camera or the batteries were dead.

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Re: No photos in the canteen

'scuse me, what's wrong with cooking at home

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Trollface

Re: No photos in the canteen

Because this was a school dinner moron! Not everyone has the luxury or ability to go home for lunch!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: No photos in the canteen

Am I the only one thinking "Lucky bastards get iced lollies these days"?

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Re: No photos in the canteen

A telescopic lens into a “School” canteen filled with “Children” the riot police would have beaten you senseless and locked away on terrorism charges before you could say “Cheese”.

I can just see the Daily Mail headline now “PEA-DOPHILE caught taking pictures of (potentially naked) children eating PEAS in a school canteen” the story would be accompanied by a picture of some peas and probably some naked children because Daily Mail readers can’t understand or be outraged at something they can’t see… even if it’s not real.

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Big Brother

Pompous council feeding on the cream

I bet the lunches at the council offices are better than they serve the kids. What a pathetic way to act. Councillors and council employees feeding off the cream while the kids get a birdseye beef burger and a couple of slices of cuecumber.

As the photos are taken on a regular basis, the sample of meals should presumably be representative of what is given out to the kids. Small portions, not enough veg, etc.

Makes me furious that when the council was exposed for providing rubbish meals, their only response is to censor the kid. Oh, and also put out another statement saying they are against censorship.

First up against the wall come the revoloution!

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Anonymous Coward

"I bet the lunches at the council offices are better than they serve the kids."

Speaking as a Scottish local government employee on his lunch break, eating macaroni from the canteen: they're not. Which is not to say our catering service is appalling, but we sure as hell aren't "feeding off the cream".

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "I bet the lunches at the council offices are better than they serve the kids."

I've worked at the council offices. The choice is usually soup, or some gristle-based pie or similar. And being the West coast of Scotland, chips count as vegetables. All washed down with `Bru.

There's also nowhere else to go anywhere near there, other than a Tesco Express at the garage down the road.

Then again, most Scottish kids like shit food. Or at least you'd have thought that if you'd seen the kids tucking into the shite we got when I was at school.

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Gistle-based pie

Sounds lovely. All it needs is some triple and some eels, and you're all set.

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Re: "I bet the lunches at the council offices are better than they serve the kids."

How well do your overlairds eat?

Just out of curiosity when decade did you go to school? Just trying to figure out when it all went to shit. It could be regional as well, I grew up in the countryside, we got decent food, nothing fancy but it was honest grub. It came from actual ingredients. Our PE hall doubled as the dining room so Friday morning PE was spent watching / hearing and smelling the dinner ladies cooking. They took a lot of pride in their work and there was always more fruit & veg if you asked nicely. Sometimes if the main course was expensive the desert was a simple sponge and custard but at least it was made in the kitchen, not in same 3rd world country out of ingredients more often found in car tyres.

Having read veg's blog and the councils statement, they seem to offer some ok food now and again. They do offer milk which as we all remember is great! They just seem to manage to screw it up plenty. It also seems like its mostly premade ding food. Fahita's, enchiladas and quesadias are cheap, easy and quick to make from scratch with decent ingredients. Sad to see us setting kids up so badly for life. It was worse to see parents handing their kids crap through the gates on JO's show.

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Re: "I bet the lunches at the council offices are better than they serve the kids."

> Just out of curiosity when decade did you go to school? Just trying to figure out when it all went to shit

Well, I was at school in the 60's/70's (not the full 20 years, you understand!). One of the big problems my schools had was that the kitchens didn't keep a lot of reserves. So the food that made up the day's lunch was delivered from the suppliers that morning.

As a consequence the suppliers (esp. for meat) could deliver any old crud, safe in the knowledge that it couldn't be rejected or the little darlings would go hungry.

I do recall many occasions where it appeared the protein (at least that's what it appeared to be) had gone through some sort of vulcanisation process before being served. Whether that was the chemical genius of the school cooks, or the quality of the raw product is difficult to say. Generally the deserts were better as there aren't many ways to mess up Spong [sic] pudding though the custard sometimes made you wonder ...

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Windows

Re: "I bet the lunches at the council offices are better than they serve the kids."

I was getting school dinners in the 60s and it was good, solid, wholesome food; although seldom any choice.

Minced meat on Mondays (local butchers getting rid of unsold meat from previous week) usually in the form of cottage pie or similar. Very occasionally lasagne (twice a year?).

Tuesdays would be chicken; usually roasted, very occasionally they would produce a stange watery tomato sauce and vegetables.

Roast Beef / Pork / Lamb on a Wednesday; served with roast potatoes and mixed veg. Sometimes with yorkshire puddings.

Stew normally on Thursdays, usually with dumplings that could be used in hand to hand combat; solid little lumps that really filled you up. I also remember having some Toad in the hole that was actually really good.

Fish on Fridays, normally steamed, very occasionally deep fried, sometimes with chips, otherwise boiled potatoes.

We were offered salads during the summer, but they were very basic; lettuce cucumber and tomato. No dressing or coleslaw. Normally with sliced cold meat, and my favourite was corned beef which most other kids turned their noses up at.

Almost every day we were offered a sweet pie or pudding for afters; and almost without exception it would be smothered in custard (which I hated). The only drink offered was water, which was supplied in large dull coloured aluminium jugs, which we drank from matching dull coloured aluminium cups.

Like yours, our dinner ladies took a pride in their work, and produced good food on a tight budget. But locally produced and sourced food.

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Re: "I bet the lunches at the council offices are better than they serve the kids."

Interesting. Mine was 80's & early 90's. All kids, no matter where they live should be getting a decent meal. The nations health is going to hell, perhaps the govts plan to save on pension payouts?

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Re: "I bet the lunches at the council offices are better than they serve the kids."

That seems like a very familiar menu! We did on occasion get stuff like pizza or curry, but it was always homemade and therefore nothing like you would expect. At the same time it was also very nice.

They could do it then, but now with 4x the amount of managers and technology they can't get past frozen croquets and hocket puck burgers made of horse tonka.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "I bet the lunches at the council offices are better than they serve the kids."

Well I was the previous AC. I went to school in Glasgow in the 80s. To be honest, the primary school I went to served the standard British stodge: mash, bits of gristly, fatty meat, completely unseasoned, usually with cold gravy, cabbage with the green boiled out of it, that sort of thing. Some people like that sort of thing, but I guess I was spoiled by a mother who could cook.

Secondary school was where things got really bad. It was pie and chips mostly. Very low quality burgers, sausages with no meat in them, that sort of thing. Burger van food, for want of a better description. Again, a hell of a lot of people like that sort of food, which is obvious as it's everywhere in the UK. Personally, I find that sort of shit revolting but realise a lot of people like it. A lot of IT companies' canteens still serve that type of food nowadays, although most people of my generation who work in such places tend to either bitch about it or avoid it. I guess the fact that a lot of people are cooking their own food again has an effect.

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Re: "I bet the lunches at the council offices are better than they serve the kids."

Ohhh, Custard. Luxury.

In the back of my larder I've a tin of Bird's custard. Imported when I moved to Finland. Unopened, and the sell-by date was at the end of the last century (I bet it's still OK)

Now, if I can get hold of some muslin (NO! - it's got an 'n' at the end, before the plods deal with my door with their "Standard Issue") and make Spotted Dick for my 56th next week...

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Re: "I bet the lunches at the council offices are better than they serve the kids."

You think the lunches are setting the kids up badly - you should see what we're doing to the economy!!!

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Re: "I bet the lunches at the council offices are better than they serve the kids."

"Then again, most Scottish kids like shit food. Or at least you'd have thought that if you'd seen the kids tucking into the shite we got when I was at school."

Just a thought - any chance the little buggers were not getting fed at home so perhaps did not have a great deal to compare against?

I.e. not so much that that love shite food, just they are so hungry they'll eat anything?

Here in Aust some schools (in the more proletariat areas - like where I grew up, before any one calls me condescending) have breakfast for kids so they can concentrate in class - as so many kids were coming to school unfed.

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WTF?

Any lawyers present?

Is it legal for the council to ban photography in a school? Is that actually written down in Scottish statute, or is this another case of civil servants overstepping their bounds?

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g e
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Re: Any lawyers present?

It'll be the council's property so presumably they can say that, yep.

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Re: Any lawyers present?

BUT surely council property is public property as it is owned by the council which is government, and last I heard you are permitted to take photographs in public places...

And I read the MSP is actually going to ask the council to reverse their decision, surely if the MSP or MP says do something, the council should do it as their the public's representative...

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Re: Any lawyers present?

Its a school. They can ban what they like. They could ban all cameras and phones if they so wished.

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Re: Any lawyers present?

IANAL, but ...

There is a subtle distinction between a property owned by the public (so a public property) and a place where any member of the public can go/take photos freely (a public place). If the school was a public place, any member of the public would be able to enter it and wander up/down it's halls, which they are obviously not allowed to do. So yes, the council was _probably_ within their rights to ban the photography.

Secondly, you _do_ vote your local council in, so they are just as much the public's representative and are not subservient to M(S)Ps . Arguably they have a stronger mandate in local matters than your M(S)Ps (and definitely your MEPs) because when voting for your council you only care about local issues, but when voting for your M(S)P you normally are voting on national issues.

Still, can see the current lot of councillors not doing very well next election.

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all she did was tell the truth. seems it hurts. maybe there is justice in the world and there will be food poisoning at the council's canteen.

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The usual solution

There's a problem.

Someone reports it.

The problem has now become the fact that it's being reported.

Stop the reporting.

Problem solved!

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Devil

In the army now

I was on an army site yesterday and the NAAFI was doing a decent steak and chips for £3.50. The solution is obviously get them in to sort school dinners out!

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Anonymous Coward

+1

Two friends had the catering corps do their wedding meal. Absolutely superb !!!!!

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Childcatcher

Re: In the army now

That was NAAFI not Sodhexo (sp?). The standard of forces catering plumeted badly when the on-camp meals were contracted out. At least you'd get decent food out in the field where contractors fear to tread.

It wouldn't surprise me if the council had contracted school dinners out to someone like Sodhexo.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: In the army now

That's £3.50 though. School canteens have a budget of about 70p per child (or so Jamie Oliver told us).

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Re: In the army now

I read that the school meal pictured was being charged at £2. May or may not be true.

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Re: +1

One of the best roast dinners I've ever had was in a field kitchen run by army catering students. Replace the generic cut of beef (which they had cooked beautifully) with some sirloin and you'd have thought you were in a top restaurant.

Great guys.

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Re: In the army now

Sounds like a plan, I always thought the NAAFI was pretty good!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: In the army now

I've no idea where they get 70p a head, it costs £2 a day for school meals.

but for 70p I can do a pretty good packed lunch, and for £2 its a very nice packed lunch!

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Re: In the army now

Stop offering sensible solutions! The council with get el reg served with a d notice!

The council have banned the kid from taking pictures, the problem does not now officially exist!

But seriously, good example!

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