IPS DONG NAI INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL: NUTRITIONAL BALANCE FOR STUDENTS FROM STANDARDIZING MENU
“Parents tend to indulge their children so much that they allow them to eat whatever they want. They don’t care if that food will provide enough nutrition to the kids and it might be nutritional imbalance. “Therefore, it is very important to provide nutrition knowledge to parents, teachers and students”, Tran Thi Ngoc Chau – Master of Nutrition in Ghent Universities (Belgium) said in a counseling sessions about nutrition knowledge and food safety, which is organized for grade 1 and 2 students at Ips Dong Nai International school – a member of TTC Edu Company. It was held on February 12th 2017.
Lacks of Nutrition Knowledge: some are underweight, some are overweight.
According to a report of Nutritional Institute in 2012, 40% - 60% of kids are lack of micronutrients for optimal growth in physical and mental health; the ratio of overweight kids in cities are up to 15%-20%; meanwhile in the countries, 30% of children are underweight. These figures have rung an alarm bell to the schools and families. The schools and families are responsible for nutritional imbalance in children.
From 2012, School Feeding Program was started in schools of some provinces, and cities throughout the country. There was a combination of food diversity and nutritional balance which was to ensure students’ health. The program brought many benefit, firstly it helped the teachers, parents and cooks aware of the importance of School Feeding Program. More importantly, School Feeding Program not only assured food safety but also nutritional balance. The delicious and diverse food met with the nutritional requirements and the tastes of students.
Standardizing Quantities, Portions and Menus
A survey in 2016 of Education and Training Ministry showed that: there are 3692 boarding schools which provide 2.6 million meals to students. Therefore, standardizing quantities, rations and menus are very important. This is also one of the most important targets of the International Department of TTC EDU Company in the last 6-month of 2016-2017 period.
Menu-Standardization plan is implemented at IPS Dong Nai International School. We build the processing kitchen under the standard of Ministry of Health and adjust the menu, train students, teachers and nannies with the basic nutritional knowledge. We also organize a seminar for parents. With the collaboration from the school and families, this program will gain big achievement in standardizing menu for students.
At the first seminar, Miss Tran Thi Ngoc Chau (specialist of nutrition) said both the school and families should provide diverse and healthy meals to students. If one of those does not provide good meals to students, it will cause nutritional imbalance. Therefore, not only teachers, the cooks but also parents should be aware of nutritional diets to avoid underweight or overweight in children.
Ms. Nguyen Trung Duong - Director of High School Department (TTCEDU) said the school will continually collaborate with the specialist of nutrition in making menus and meals for every age of students. This menu will be based on the nutritional requirements of the students, the documents of the WHO and Vietnam Nutrition Institute. There are primary and high school students in IPS Dong Nai, so the menus will be different. For primary students, their meals have to be joyful and colorful. For high school students, we focus on the importance of nutrition for puberty and growing. According to the research, the percentage of underweight students is 0.27% and overweight student is 19%. Therefore, the school will consider nutritional requirements for these groups of students in order to prepare suitable menus.
Our main target is to train the human resources and curriculum, besides we also want to build up the quality of IPS Dong Nai and other schools in TTC EDU groups. In the future, the high schools in TTC EDU groups will operate the model dormitory; complete standardizing quantities, rations, and menus for international department. And it will be implemented in high quality schools, the teachers will also be trained with necessary knowledge. The schools will improve the connection with families. These are the efforts that we have been done and will keep doing in the future. The quality is our first priority and the students are essential.