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Last Updated: Wednesday, 7 March 2007, 18:12 GMT
Pupils are to face lunchbox exams
Simon Emsley
Mr Emsley said his school would not be checking pupils' lunches
Teachers are being encouraged to check pupils' lunchboxes as part of a healthy eating drive in Derby.

The city council has issued guidelines suggesting primary schools carry out random checks twice a year.

Head teacher Simon Emsley of Lakeside Community Primary School, Alvaston said the inspections were not something his school ought to be doing.

A council spokesperson said the checks were not compulsory and teachers were not being asked to confiscate items.

"We are not suggesting that they (teachers) go in and snoop on what children are eating and we are not suggesting at any point that a school looks in a child's lunchbox and says `you are not eating that, it's unhealthy'.

"It's up to the school. It's guidance for the schools and it is for them to decide whether they will accept it or not."

Parents are more than capable of putting food in their children's packed lunches
Simon Emsley, head teacher

The guidance was issued by the Healthy Schools City of Derby project, which is a joint initiative by the city's council and primary care trust.

It lists sweets, chocolate-spread sandwiches and fizzy drinks as unhealthy foods that teachers should look out for.

Healthy contents include cereals, fruit, vegetables and fish.

Mr Emsley said he was happy to hand out information on healthy eating to help families that wanted it but would not want to carry out lunchbox inspections.

"I personally do not think it's something we need to be doing and something we ought to be doing.

"Parents are more than capable of putting food in their children's packed lunches. All I'm prepared to do is to give advice for those who want that."

A Derbyshire headteacher has refused to carry out random checks

Packed lunches worse than dinners
14 Jan 07 |  Bristol/Somerset
School nutrition 'to be relaxed'
29 Dec 06 |  Scotland

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