The Courier’s ‘Can It’ campaign has been backed by councillors after the bid to ban energy drinks from schools was praised at a meeting of the full Fife Council.
Elected members endorsed our drive as they congratulated Glenrothes High School for not only supporting the ‘Can It’ campaign but also for introducing an initiative where all foods, drinks and snacks sold in school list the calorie and carbohydrate content along with the amount of salt, energy, protein and fats.
A motion commending GHS for its approach was subject to an amendment which congratulated all schools taking part in ‘Can It’ and said the council would consider rolling out the GHS pilot on food labelling.
“We need to recognise and congratulate and formally support The Courier’s Can It campaign and the work it is doing with our schools in Fife and more widely across what it calls Courier Country,” said council leader David Ross.
“There’s a lot we can do in schools but to have our regional, daily newspaper publicising that in ways we can’t is a big boost to this.”
Audrey Grieve, from Glenrothes High, said: “Fizzy juice is banned from our school – however more needs to be done to highlight the growing need to stop children under 16-years-old from consuming energy drinks.
“Small independent shops should be discouraged from selling to under-16s.”
Kirkcaldy High, Bell Baxter High in Cupar and Lochgelly High had previously signed up, but they are now not alone.
Waid Academy in Anstruther said it was pleased to support The Courier’s campaign, adding that its Health and Wellbeing Group has been raising awareness of the potential effects from drinking such drinks.
The school’s Student Congress has also aimed to increase the number of water fountains on school premises and this week reached agreement from PPP partners for one to be installed in the sports hall.
Rector Iain Hughes said: “We currently do not sell carbonated drinks from any outlet in the school but there is still a task ahead to limit the number of these being brought onto school premises.
“We strongly believe that for the significant health benefits to our learners that we have to break down the culture of drinking energy drinks.”
St Andrew’s RC High in Kirkcaldy is on board, and headteacher Patrick Callaghan said: “I am increasingly concerned by the number of cans of these energy drinks that I see from early on each day and also the large bottles of fizzy juice that a number of pupils are buying at lunchtime.
“I welcome the support of parents/carers and will discuss the campaign fully with our Parent Council at our next meeting at the end of August.”
They have also been joined by Queen Anne High in Dunfermline, where depute rector Douglas Sinclair said the school was pleased to back the campaign, and Balwearie High in Kirkcaldy.
“Healthy choices related to diet are so important in being able to perform effectively at school,” said Balwearie depute head Tara McGibbon.
“It is vital that young people really consider their options wisely when consuming soft drinks.”
Finally, Inverkeithing High depute headteacher Nicola Masterson said the school is seeking to develop an action plan to take the issue forward after the summer.