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Food brought from home – healthy food choices

Working with children to improve their understanding about healthy food choices can have a positive impact upon what is brought to school.

This includes making sure parents and caregivers are aware of the site's policy around healthy food, and encouraging them to consider it when providing food and drinks.

It is important that teachers and carers do not judge what is in a child's lunchbox or send food home with a child.


Often parents will send a cake to school as a celebration of their child’s birthday. Individual schools and preschools are encouraged to develop strategies with their school community for these occasions.

Birthday celebration strategies might include:

  • asking parents to provide a healthy option instead of cake such as fruit platter, fruit salad, or smoothies
  • celebrating all the birthdays falling in a particular month (or term) with one cake to celebrate collectively
  • encouraging a modified cake recipe that could be promoted through class or school newsletters
  • choosing an alternative to cake for birthdays such as a lucky dip or other non-food item
  • asking parents to provide low fat muffins, or reduced portion size options such as cupcakes or a cheese platter and biscuits 
  • offering any cake provided for children at the end of the school day as children exit the classroom so that normal eating patterns or appetite are not affected
  • considering the significance of birthday celebrations in a range of cultural settings in order to generate understanding from a variety of perspectives.

Schools and preschools are encouraged to consider this topic through staff meeting discussion.

Energy drinks

There are no set guidelines for students bringing energy drinks to school. Individual schools are encouraged to develop policies in consultation with their communities.

Teachers are encouraged to use information about energy drinks to work with students and children to help them make informed and responsible choices about their use.

Providing accurate information to the parent community and governing council about the possible harmful effects of energy drinks is also important.

Healthy lunch box ideas

Healthy kids

SA Health

Engagement and Wellbeing – healthy eating

Phone: 8226 1931
Email: education.RightBite [at] sa.gov.au