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Thread: Wow, just wow!

  1. #1
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    Default Wow, just wow!

    So apparently I have time to read stuff online today ... This article left me fuming!

    http://www.foxnews.com/us/2014/05/23...er-overweight/

    I do not think that any bureaucrat has any right to medically evaluate children, this should be handled during physicals. I hope that this family gets enough public attention (and outrage) to this that the school district discontinues the practice.

    ETA: Just adding a link to a recent interview with the girl and her mom. http://www.foxnews.com/us/2014/05/23...cmp=latestnews

    I wanted to add it since there were questions whether the photo is current. Whether or not you think that Fox News would go as far as completely fabricating this story, it's up to you. It seems like a regular interview, not a couple of actors.
    Last edited by impatient; 05-24-2014 at 02:29 PM.

  2. #2

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    I am torn on this. I do think it is unfortunate that she was upset by the letter. BUT...I think there are way too many kids that are overweight and obese these days, it looks as though those parents aren't able to get things under control...someone needs to step in. It is not only dangerous, potentially deadly, for the obese child...and makes their life more problematic than need be, but the obesity problem in our nation is also a drain on our country as well. Something has got to give, changes need to be made. If the parents can't, won't, are unable to do what is needed then who will? There will always be errors made, as in the case with this girl, but I think the good they are trying to do outweighs the bad. I have 1 DD that may end up with one of these letters erroneously as she is one of those with a bigger bone structure, so she is heavy, but not fat...but I hope we do enough teaching at home about what is healthy and what isn't that she will not be too concerned over a piece of paper that obviously doesn't apply to her. I would not want to take this opportunity away from the kids that could use the help simply because it is not tailored enough to be 100% accurate for every single child in our country...nothing is tailored that closely. Lets take this for the helpful tool it can be, use it as best we can, and not poke holes in it....of course it is not perfect, what is...but does that mean we should continue to do nothing?

    ~*~Katrina~*~ Momma to Xander, Hayden & Lily (6) and Jericho (3 1/2)

  3. #3

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    I think it is wrong to have an administrator evaluate a person based on height and weight. Period. It is also wrong to give that letter to the children and only an absolute idiot can expect that a bunch of kids at this age won't open and read the letters; it takes one child to do it and it becomes wildfire.. everyone will hear what it's about and open it.

    BMI is a good measure but very relative; a professional needs to see the child and evaluate the height/weight/muscle mass/bone structure ratio. The uber sexy, totally fit, young looking instructor in my turbo kicks class who I doubt has any fat on her told us that she is technically borderline overweight according to BMI charts. So it depends. Again BMI could be a useful tool but its usefulness depends on the person - athletic person has to be evaluated differently than the one with more sedentary lifestyle. However, a bureaucrat should not be able to make this determination IMO.

    There is a huge obesity problem and body image problem - they go hand in hand and we as society have to work toward resolving it but what this school district is doing ain't the way to do it
    Last edited by tanyachap; 05-23-2014 at 11:06 AM.
    KEVIN (6) & MATTHEW (4)

  4. #4

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    I am not a health expert but, from that pic that girl doesn't even look a droplet of overweight. I totally get that its a problem however, it needs to be a problem that is talked about privately with a family doctor and the parent this doesn't need to be public thing. We need to keep the school out of it, h*ll most school nurses are even full time employees school needs to focus on education not health.
    *** Lindsay ***



  5. #5
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    I hate BMI scores. I can tell you that I always score high but I am not in anyway overweight. I normally have a higher muscle mass than average and when I have been in very good shape everything said that I was overweight. When I have been very ill and clearly look underweight I come up in the normal range. It is messed up!

    I also think that such letters/determinations should be made by physicians and not the school district.
    Jessica (33) and Ryan (33). Madelyn born August 5, 2009; Malachi born December 23, 2010 and Nathaniel born July 19, 2013. Lost a loved baby 02/29/12, 05/14/12 and 07/05/12 all due a serious allergic reaction to fabric softener.
    My Ovulation Chart , My blog about MCAD

  6. #6

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    It's a sticky situation. The sad truth is that while, yes, a physician should be the one to evaluate a child's health, nutrition, etc., in too many cases it doesn't happen. Especially in urban environments, there are so many children who don't see a doctor regularly, don't get checkups, whose parents are either uninsured, unable to get them to the doctor, or move too frequently to find one. Very often, the only access these kids ever have to a doctor is in an ER or urgent care when they're very sick, and weight may not be something the doctor has a chance to discuss. The only place they may ever get their health checked is at school. I remember as a kid getting dental, hearing and vision, and scoliosis checkups at school, as well as having a fitness test. Obviously I didn't need any of these things, as my parents took me to the doctor. But the exams were in place because many more kids than we might imagine fall through the cracks every day.
    There was also a recent study that said that many parents of overweight and obese children did not know their kids were overweight. Some parents, as strange as it sounds, really need to be educated on this topic so they can help their kids be healthy. Probably none of the moms on this board are in that situation, but we are a very small percentage of very involved parents.

    I also agree that if letters regarding fitness and health needed to be sent home, mailing would be a much better and kinder option -- but perhaps they've tried that and know that few of the letters get to parents? Again, in urban environments, it's not like everyone has a house with a picket fence and a nice little mailbox. Plenty of these kids may not even have a permanent address, or may be staying with relatives, or may live somewhere where they don't get all their mail. Sending letters home with kids may be the best way to get them to parents, even though it's an obviously flawed system.
    -- mom to DD1 1/98 and DD2 10/09


  7. #7

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    /\ /\ I totally agree! We can not keep doing the same thing and expect a different result. I am sorry that it is not PC enough for some but our nations children are obese, many morbidly, we can not keep hiding our heads in the sand and hope it goes away...it won't. Action must be taken, and it has t start on the front lines....and for MANY families the front lines do not include a Doctor. We wouldn't be in this situation if what we are doing is working, so it is time to do something different.

    ~*~Katrina~*~ Momma to Xander, Hayden & Lily (6) and Jericho (3 1/2)

  8. #8

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    The problem with this approach is that it casts a net too large - it gets children who are not overweight and creates more issues than it resolves. I know obese children, one of them my niece, and yes something different must be done but sending a letter through kids saying that these kids are overweight, when many of them are not, is wrong.

    I could understand it better if they were sending letters only to those parents whose children are obese per BMI charts. Overweight according to the BMI charts is the gray area - too many athletic and muscular children fall into it. Obesity, however, is different. It is hard to imagine a child so athletic that it is considered obese but s/he is all actually all muscles. So if the school district is so concerned with obesity, start there. I am still not sure that it actually solves anything that way.

    Finally, body image, improper/insufficient nutrition for the sake of being skinny, associated eating disorders IS JUST AS DANGEROUS AS BEING OBESE.
    KEVIN (6) & MATTHEW (4)

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by TripMomma View Post
    /\ /\ I totally agree! We can not keep doing the same thing and expect a different result. I am sorry that it is not PC enough for some but our nations children are obese, many morbidly, we can not keep hiding our heads in the sand and hope it goes away...it won't. Action must be taken, and it has t start on the front lines....and for MANY families the front lines do not include a Doctor. We wouldn't be in this situation if what we are doing is working, so it is time to do something different.
    The great news is that the rates have actually gone down. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/26/he...cade.html?_r=0

    I don't agree with this letter being home with kids who can actually read it. I was a chubby kid and that would have been devastating for me.....I had good self-esteem but that might have broken me.

    Jennifer, 35, DH 36

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by tanyachap View Post
    The problem with this approach is that it casts a net too large - it gets children who are not overweight and creates more issues than it resolves. I know obese children, one of them my niece, and yes something different must be done but sending a letter through kids saying that these kids are overweight, when many of them are not, is wrong.

    I could understand it better if they were sending letters only to those parents whose children are obese per BMI charts. Overweight according to the BMI charts is the gray area - too many athletic and muscular children fall into it. Obesity, however, is different. It is hard to imagine a child so athletic that it is considered obese but s/he is all actually all muscles. So if the school district is so concerned with obesity, start there. I am still not sure that it actually solves anything that way.

    Finally, body image, improper/insufficient nutrition for the sake of being skinny, associated eating disorders IS JUST AS DANGEROUS AS BEING OBESE.
    But this is the whole approach to public education/ health, etc. Cast the net that is going to cover the most people, whether its core curriculum or herd immunity vaccines. If they singled out obese kids, there would be uproar over that too. This way everyone gets a letter. Knowing your child is in overweight category is good too, so you know to take action sooner. Yes, eating disorders are dangerous, but we can't avoid saying anything not positive about a child just so they dont feel bad. The children were told not to read the letters, they did. THAT is the problem here. The parents should have gotten the information and dealt with it accordingly without the children being involved.

    A friend of mine is a child obesity researcher/professor. I've read some of her studies. Most of the parents of obese and overweight children dont know their kids are obese or at risk for it, over estimate their children's exersize and under estimate their food intake. We all like to embrace this everyone is beautiful no matter the size philosophy, which is true. But not every size is *healthy*.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by tanyachap View Post
    Finally, body image, improper/insufficient nutrition for the sake of being skinny, associated eating disorders IS JUST AS DANGEROUS AS BEING OBESE.
    And just as much, a skinny kid can be really unhealthy and fat on the inside due to bad nutrition. I was just watching an interview with a pediatric endocrinologist and he was talking about how that they call that TOFI...thin outside, fat inside. Metabolically they are just as much at risk for things like heart disease and diabetes as the fat person, maybe more so depending on the fat persons diet and exercise habits. And he was saying that it was a lot more common than most people think. Assumption is that thin=healthy and fat=mcdonalds, candy and sugar drinks all day long (which as a fat person I can tell you that I do not eat fast food, rarely candy and cannot drink sugar drinks).
    Last edited by Cosmosmom; 05-23-2014 at 02:19 PM.

    Jennifer, 35, DH 36

  12. #12

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    I don't know what the right answer is but I know the food served by our public school system along with the opportunities (lack of) provided for physical activity are a contributing do factor to our nation's childhood obesity problem. But yay, they sent a letter home so they've done their part, right?

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bridget View Post
    I don't know what the right answer is but I know the food served by our public school system along with the opportunities (lack of) provided for physical activity are a contributing do factor to our nation's childhood obesity problem. But yay, they sent a letter home so they've done their part, right?
    this. and its a fox news report which means it could be false too. i don't trust anything fox says.


  14. #14

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    looking at the photo and article again, the girl is the exact same height as my daughter and 18lbs heavier. it makes me wonder if she was miss measured, or its an old photo. Or it just shows that BMI isnt all that helpful. But its hard to imagine my daughter weiging almost 40% more than she does and and not look a little bigger, but she looks just like the girl in the photo.

  15. #15

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    I will have to double check my dd's height tomorrow but I believe she is about an inch taller than that child and weighs 70lbs. We are active, healthy eaters and I'd be beyond upset to receive this letter. In fact, my dd never even had traditional candy nor boxed cookies until she went to school and it was given by her teacher as a reward for good behavior.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by TripMomma View Post
    /\ /\ I totally agree! We can not keep doing the same thing and expect a different result. I am sorry that it is not PC enough for some but our nations children are obese, many morbidly, we can not keep hiding our heads in the sand and hope it goes away...it won't. Action must be taken, and it has t start on the front lines....and for MANY families the front lines do not include a Doctor. We wouldn't be in this situation if what we are doing is working, so it is time to do something different.
    While I agree that we shouldn't turn our head away from it and its very sad that parents are being parents but, the budgets for schools are tight enough. The teachers already have 20+ students per class and sometimes way.. more. Maybe doctors need to have more options VS the school getting involved. The school can do their part by
    allowing for more time outside which helps without them paying doctor when they aren't qualified.
    *** Lindsay ***



  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by JJorn View Post
    I hate BMI scores. I can tell you that I always score high but I am not in anyway overweight. I normally have a higher muscle mass than average and when I have been in very good shape everything said that I was overweight. When I have been very ill and clearly look underweight I come up in the normal range. It is messed up!

    I also think that such letters/determinations should be made by physicians and not the school district.
    I agree with you especially the bold part. I was in 120 in high school and 5 feet 1 inch I never weighed more than 125 after my freshman year until motherhood. Thought my BMI was never overweight until motherhood it was 24 which is 1 point off being being overweight with my BMI. Then I had some people thought I was too skinny. I used to
    get so upset by that because I was healthy for my height and weight and at that time had worked my butt off to lose weight. I was a size 9 from the end of my Freshman year until I was 15 weeks pregnant with Cody. I haven't been able to get back down lower than 14 for now but, most people think I am smaller which is a nice complement but, its frustrating to know that though I enjoy being told I look good even by my doctor I have that nagging feeling and pressure of needing to lose more weight. It sucks. I am trying but, I keep hit some brick walls with all that's been happening in my life. I couldn't ever imagine being a a size 9 again without starving myself and who wants that? That's the same or worst than being 15 pounds overweight! Cody is 50% for weight and height and has been since he was a tot but, the boy looks like all muscle he has no fat. Sophia is in the 0-3% for both height and weight and she has the normal "chub" but, is in no way overweight or underweight. I think they need to start ditching the BMI chart and go with what's effective stats- B/P, blood sugars, cholesterol and heart disease while obesity does play into though its not always "skinny" is the healthiest or "big" is an automatic unhealthy there is some middle ground and between.
    *** Lindsay ***



  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bridget View Post
    I will have to double check my dd's height tomorrow but I believe she is about an inch taller than that child and weighs 70lbs. We are active, healthy eaters and I'd be beyond upset to receive this letter. In fact, my dd never even had traditional candy nor boxed cookies until she went to school and it was given by her teacher as a reward for good behavior.
    I think you are doing great Bridget!
    *** Lindsay ***



  19. #19

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    This wasnt a judgement on the girl, or the other 85,000 children who get these letters in NY every year.

    The letter was basically a screen shot of the cdc's BMI calculator for kids. It said she was this tall, weighed this much which puts her at the 89th percentile which is considered overweight, please consult with your pediatrician to see what this means. The BMI is a tool, this was a screening. Just like if she has showed some signs of needing glasses, they would have said get her eyes checked, she cant see well. The BMI is a tool to help determine risk factors, something to discuss with your dr.

    Schools have been doing health assessments forever. Even back in the 70s they lined us up in gym class and weighed, measured, did eye checks, checked for scoliosis, etc.

  20. #20
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    The thing that bothers me most is that this was done by the school district and not in the privacy of a doctor's office. And just because there are a few crappy parents who do not care, why take the right to address health situation of a child away from every parent?

    I too remember being weighed and measured in school as a child and it was always traumatic. We had to line up in underwear and everyone's weight would be read out loud for everyone else to hear. I was never overweight as a child - which I know now and can see it in pictures, but I always thought I was fat an ugly as a kid. I reached my adult height at 11 and was the tallest of my friends for several years. On top of that I started my period before anyone else I knew and at 11 I needed a bra. I was already teased a lot over the bra, having boobs and having to sit out swim lessons due to my period. When the other girls heard my weight, they would call me fat. Today I understand that I weighed more because I was several inches taller than the other kids but back then I focused just on the number on the scale and it was bigger than everyone else's.

    I understand that one should have healthy self-confidence to let stuff like this roll of their back, but I think that is a lot to expect of a young child.

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    I added a current video of the girl in the OP - she definitely does not look overweight. The video is from May 23.

  22. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by impatient View Post
    The thing that bothers me most is that this was done by the school district and not in the privacy of a doctor's office. And just because there are a few crappy parents who do not care, why take the right to address health situation of a child away from every parent?

    I too remember being weighed and measured in school as a child and it was always traumatic. We had to line up in underwear and everyone's weight would be read out loud for everyone else to hear. I was never overweight as a child - which I know now and can see it in pictures, but I always thought I was fat an ugly as a kid. I reached my adult height at 11 and was the tallest of my friends for several years. On top of that I started my period before anyone else I knew and at 11 I needed a bra. I was already teased a lot over the bra, having boobs and having to sit out swim lessons due to my period. When the other girls heard my weight, they would call me fat. Today I understand that I weighed more because I was several inches taller than the other kids but back then I focused just on the number on the scale and it was bigger than everyone else's.

    I understand that one should have healthy self-confidence to let stuff like this roll of their back, but I think that is a lot to expect of a young child.
    Yes, all of this. I was also weighed and was super embarrassing in front of the whole class thank goodness they didn't read my number aloud but, that doesn't mean the girl behind me with the size 0 arse couldn't peak over my shoulder. Doctor OZ hates the BMI thing from what I gather instead of weight he focuses on waist size. That makes a huge difference. He was on the Joy Behr show and she is very curvy but, her waist size VS BMI tells a different story. Her waist size was totally normal and she was surprised she wasn't overweight.
    *** Lindsay ***



  23. #23

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    I was underweight by standards at that age and it was still humiliating. Also humiliating was the whole physical strength and endurance testing.

  24. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bridget View Post
    I was underweight by standards at that age and it was still humiliating. Also humiliating was the whole physical strength and endurance testing.
    I passed gym in HS with a D- that was embarrassing I was so.. happy not to take again after being a freshman. I struggled with the pull-up could only do 2. It seems like schools just want everyone to be perfect and we aren't. It sucks!
    *** Lindsay ***



  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by runningmomofmany View Post
    looking at the photo and article again, the girl is the exact same height as my daughter and 18lbs heavier. it makes me wonder if she was miss measured, or its an old photo. Or it just shows that BMI isnt all that helpful. But its hard to imagine my daughter weiging almost 40% more than she does and and not look a little bigger, but she looks just like the girl in the photo.
    My daughter's annual physical was last month, and she had the same height but my daughter was 15 pounds lighter than the girl in the article. I'm wondering if the girl in the article was mis-measured also.


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    Quote Originally Posted by 3andMe View Post
    My daughter's annual physical was last month, and she had the same height but my daughter was 15 pounds lighter than the girl in the article. I'm wondering if the girl in the article was mis-measured also.
    I think this is a good point. I have often left pedi's office thinking the kids measurements were off (especially for height). I am not sure how the BMI calculator is for kids the girl's age but for my DD 1/2 inch off can significantly change her BMI.

  27. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by impatient View Post
    I think this is a good point. I have often left pedi's office thinking the kids measurements were off (especially for height). I am not sure how the BMI calculator is for kids the girl's age but for my DD 1/2 inch off can significantly change her BMI.
    The measurements were taken in November. ther's a very good chance she had gotten taller between then and now.

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