Parents’ and young adults’ perceptions of secondary school food education in Australia

Janandani Nanayakkara (Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition, School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences, Deakin University, Geelong, Australia)
Melissa Burton (Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition, School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences, Deakin University, Geelong, Australia)
Claire Margerison (Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition, School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences, Deakin University, Geelong, Australia)
Anthony Worsley (Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition, School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences, Deakin University, Geelong, Australia)

British Food Journal

ISSN: 0007-070X

Publication date: 8 May 2018

Abstract

Purpose

Secondary school food education provides students with opportunities to build lifelong healthy dietary practices. A number of stakeholder groups are important for the success of this form of education. Accordingly, the purpose of this paper is to examine young adults’ and parents’ opinions of secondary school food education.

Design/methodology/approach

An online survey was administered to 1,086 respondents drawn from a commercial research panel.

Findings

In total, 50-60 per cent of all respondents agreed that food education should be compulsory for years seven to ten and 31-32 per cent of respondents agreed that it should be compulsory for years 11 and 12. Almost 69 per cent suggested one to three hours per week for food education. More than 75 per cent of respondents agreed that there should be a non-compulsory food and nutrition subject for year 11 and 12 students and believed that this subject would help students to develop their food-related knowledge and skills.

Practical implications

There is a gap between parents’ and young adults’ views of school food education and what is actually practiced in Australian secondary schools. Obtaining their opinions in future food-related education and policy reforms could help design and deliver food education to better meet the expectations of its recipients: students and their families.

Originality/value

The examination of large number of young adults’ and parents’ opinions of school food education makes this study unique.

Keywords

Citation

Nanayakkara, J., Burton, M., Margerison, C. and Worsley, A. (2018), "Parents’ and young adults’ perceptions of secondary school food education in Australia", British Food Journal, Vol. 120 No. 5, pp. 1151-1166. https://doi.org/10.1108/BFJ-10-2017-0554

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Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited

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