Pushers of healthy foods for kids -- what a concept -- have long decried sodas and other sugary drinks' prevalence in public schools. But at least in San Francisco, not every school has a drinking alternative other than juice and sports drinks that's available for students to use. Not even, it turns out, safe tap water.
As many as eight schools use bottled water in cafeterias because the tap water is not safe to drink, according to the San Francisco Examiner. That means that aging pipes are keeping SF schools from complying with state law, which requires safe tap water to be available to all students.
San Francisco Unified School District will craft this summer a plan to bring safe, potable water to all of its schools as requried under Senate Bill 1413. But the school has asked for more time: the Board of Education wants until the 2015-2016 to have safe drinking water for all of its students, citing the $20 million in budget cuts made this year.
The law is that all schools across the state were mandated to have safe drinking water by Friday. Four years after that is a long time to wait, said Dana Waldow, the former chair of the school district's Student Nutrition Committee, which has worked to bring in fresh fruits and vegetables into schools (and has seen students' test scores rise as a result).
"Making water available is an absolute necessity," she told the newspaper.