Assessing The Impact Of School Breakfast


For more than a century academic policy makers have recognized the impact that adequate nourishment plays in the development of humans from childhood to adulthood. It is clear that one of the reasons for physical and mental under-development of children in some parts of the world is malnourishment due to hunger and starvation. However, much scientific research has been carried out over the years to establish the precise nature of the correlation between proper nourishment and cognitive or intellectual development in children. One of the specific experiments carried out focused on the impact of school breakfast on the behavior of children and their academic performance in school.

Hunger and starvation is one of the grim realities that faces many communities and families round the world and the developed nations are not exempted. For instance, in the U.S., it is estimated that about thirty five million Americans are threatened with hunger and about ten million of those are children. Needless to say, hunger and malnourishment hampers the ability of such children to learn or assimilate knowledge. A nation which hopes to remain at the forefront of global affairs must strive to invest properly in the education and the development of its children and youths. A significant part of this investment should go in the way of removing all obstacles to effective education. Breakfast has long been recognized as the most critically important meal of the day.

Impact of Malnourishment on Children’s Learning Ability

Research findings demonstrate the fact that undernourished children are more prone to developing health issues like anemia, kwashiorkor and frequent illness as well as demonstrating markedly less effective developmental outcomes in their education. Also, they are more prone to absenteeism, negative emotional behaviors such as being inattentive and being withdrawn. Their brains lack the required nutritional inputs that will ensure concentration for learning and so, their education is effectively impaired by malnourishment.

Impact of School Breakfast Programs

In the light of what has been discussed above, it is clear that The School Breakfast Program run by The United States Government is highly effective in mitigating the effects of hunger and malnourishment on cognitive and physical development of American school children. The consensus of available evidence is that serving breakfast to deprived children actually helps them to achieve better concentration, assimilation and performance in standardized test scores across the nation. Evidence also indicates less health problems for beneficiaries of this laudable program.