Calgary public schools have replaced junk food in their cafeterias and vending machines with healthier choices.


Nutritional foods are now being offered at Calgary public school cafeterias in place of junk food. (CBC)

The Calgary School Board (CBE) worked with Alberta Health Services on the new policy, which took effect in 2012.

If students want high sodium, high sugar foods such as chips and chocolate bars, they can still bring them to school. 

But the foods offered in CBE cafeterias now follow provincial nutrition guidelines.

"For me it’s a matter of confidence. I have to feel confident that what is being served in the cafeteria is something I would let my own children eat," said Elaine Knudtson, principal at Balmoral School.

There's an educational component to new food plan as well.

 "In their health classes certainly in their phys-ed classes, in science they also will be understanding and coming to see how those choices impact their successes," said CBE superintendent of learning innovation Cathy Faber.

But some parents argue that the students should have been more involved in the changes.

"When you've got big brother there saying you just don't have the choice you're not really teaching kids how to make the wise choices," said Eryn Kelly, who is with the Calgary Association of Parents and School Councils.  

Hao Wang, a Grade 8 student at Balmoral School — which has had a healthy eating program in place for four years — said he doesn't miss the junk food.

"Healthy choices means healthier lifetsyles right? So basically if you eat junk food you might get un fit in the future," he said.