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Should we have a food court in elementary school?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/14/2012 Category: Education
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 5,059 times Debate No: 24284
Debate Rounds (4)
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Hello. This is a debate whether or not food courts should be established in elementary schools.

For clarification:

FOOD COURT- An area, typically in a shopping mall, where fast-food outlets, tables, and chairs are located.

ELEMENTARY SCHOOL- A school for the first four to eight grades, and usually including kindergarten.

1st round is acceptance. First one to accept this debate shall be my opponent,
(arguing why food courts shouldn't be established in elementary schools)



Debate Round No. 1


I wasn't expecting that kind of acceptance, but whatever. NOTE: I'M SO VERY SORRY BUT I WOULD LIKE IT IF YOU COULD ONLY STATE ONE REASON FOR EACH ROUND. YOU CAN REBUTE THE OPPONENT'S DEBATE AND THEN STATE YOUR ONE REASON. THANK YOU. For simplicity, I will label my reasons with a "R".

R1: In reality, school lunches are nasty.

School lunches are nasty and have always been nasty. According a website: " meals remain as unhealthy and as remarkably disgusting-sounding as they've always been. Dishes like beef chili are still loaded with fat, and despite the Department of Education's claims it is "eliminating" high-fructose corn syrup, the sweetener was found in ketchup, chocolate milk, corn flakes, and a prefabricated grilled cheese that is heated and served in the plastic bag it comes in." Those statements show how nasty school lunches are. Also, there has been several school lunches riots in these following society websites:

Sorry about the "one-reason" thing. I NEED to study. Really bad. Thanks.


Ah, well, as I'm a newbie, I should be forgiven for my abnormal acceptance.

Your condition is acceptable. I'll label my response lower case (r) and argument C.

C1: Obesity is an epidemic

First, obesity is an epidemic. I think this is relatively uncontroversial, but the obesity rates have increased dramatically over the last 50 years. We should care, because obesity comes paired with significant medical costs, at ~$1,429 higher than normal weight, on average [1]. Second, obesity is linked to caloric consumption. Again, uncontroversial, calories in, calories out, or weight gain. Third, fast food, i.e., the fast food in your food courts, is very high in fat, saturated fat, calories, salt, etc. It's not healthy. Fourth, school lunches must meet national nutrition guidelines [2]. Just as we needn't care to maximize recess utility, the purpose of school is not to expand culinary horizons. School lunches are of critical importance, especially to lower income students who occasionally find themselves in food desserts. They need this nutrition outlet. Lower income nutrition trumps hipster taste buds. With no offense to hipsters.

r1: Non-unique. Fast food is nasty and has always been nasty. I realize taste is subjective, but schools are under no obligation to cater to niche tastes. In other words, there's no guarantee fast food solves for taste. Or, if we choose to advocate taste as the ultimate paradigm, which I argue in C1 is incorrect, then clearly this paradigm is best served by 'sweet spot' food. Sweet spot being food catered to individual tastes, which can never be accomplished by restaurants forced to fit 'fat spot' marketing. I guess the pun could be intended. Thus, if all we care about is taste, then students should just bring their lunches from home. Their tastes will always be better served by the effort they're willing to expend than by fast foods limited fare. If they continue to eat school lunches, we can presume they didn't care that much. Independently, the lunches served at the public schools I attended were acceptably decent.

Also, Yahoo answers is not an acceptable source. It's worse that Wikipedia. And the Wiki page I altered has remained incorrect for 5 years.

Debate Round No. 2


191101568 forfeited this round.


Well. First, we should extend C1 and r1.

I think per the rules I'm permitted to add an additional argument here.

C2: Infrastructure/Funding

Food courts as per my opponents definition involve multiple fast food restaurants. Many schools lack the existing infrastructure necessary to support the additional facilities. The cost to 'establish' said food courts would likely run into the millions of dollars. Considering the state of the US debt and education funding in general, it's ludicrous to suggest we could afford this additional spending. Or that even if we could, that this is the most pressing educational investment. (Mightn't we instead prefer textbook, etc.) Anticipating the potential taxation of the food courts, first, this doesn't address upfront investment, second, that public schools can't run 'for profit' enterprise. The food courts would be required to be accessible to even the poorest.
Debate Round No. 3


Ok. I'm sorry for the forfeit, and I expect some drawbacks from it. To make things simple, I will convert your reasons into main ideas. (Re1)

Re1: Food courts make students obese/fat.

I disagree, for some fast-foods are healthy. Subway, Panera Bread, Jason's Deli, etc..... ( Those kind of restaurants aren't as fatty and greasy as other fast-foods.

Re2: Funds

You state that making food courts in schools are too expensive. However, several schools have already had restaurants in their cafeteria. Face it. The students love it and will buy it most days. That will take care of the money problem. Also, schools can have fundraisers and donations to support the food courts. The food courts don't have to big and fancy. It just needs to have enough to satisfy the kids' hunger.

Thanks for debating with me. :)



C1/Re1 (I don't understand why you relabeled?):

So, some fast food is healthy. I think it's implicit to this claim that *other* fast food isn't. Assuming a proportionate (which is reasonable because nothing else was specified) healthy/unhealthy representation and at best you minimize. Food courts still increase fat/saturated fat consumption and we still get more obesity.


I think you misunderstand the argument. Even if some schools have the existing facility to host 3-5 food court restaurants, the majority do not. The funds required to establish these food courts will run in the millions of dollars per. It isn't an issue of establishing long-term solvency, they probably could, but rather finding the initial investment. Even if we could find the requisite billions, this would not be close to the best use of educational money.

Extend r1: No unique benefit to food courts.

In the final analysis I see no benefit to food courts against 2 unique costs of food courts, even minimized.

Best of luck with your finals

Voters, thank you for your attention.
Debate Round No. 4
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