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Is a school food provider allowed to become a monopoly inside a school?

Our school food provider has been yearly reducing food quality and raising food prices. On the foods that they can't lower quality, they raise prices faster. Cans of soda there are 1.25$, and that is one of the cheaper things. Three pieces of chicken about the size of the space between your pointer and thumb if you make a circle are $4.75. On top of that the lunch program doesn't allow other competition, even vending machines. We can't even order food from outside of the school. Is this allowed?

Is it a high school or university? If it is a high school, then it falls under the school district. By university, it varies whether they are private or public.

Either way, it stinks!

Good luck!

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Check your state's legislation. Maybe no one has thought to ask. Bring it up with the school board, or the superintendent. Make some noise...maybe you'll be heard. You can't be the only person who's upset about this.

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There's precedent for student-clamoring yeilding change, especially if it's a high school... recent article:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/05/17/AR2010051703423.html

I don't know about the financial issues, as much, but there's been a huge hubub lately about the nutritional quality of school lunches, so lots of times when people agitate now I think they find more receptive listeners... I'd say first find out who's in charge of those decisions at your school; then talk to other students/ see if you can get a group of folks interested in pursuing the issue; then keep going up the ladder of people to complain to, until they get tired of hearing about it and do something different! squeaky wheel gets the grease, & all...

If it's a college, maybe the pre-law prof's would give you info about monopoly rules! And do you have a campus or local newspaper that you could write something up for? Universities AND high schools absolutely detest bad press... and (as hubby journalist loves to point out!): it ain't libel if it's true!

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Yes, it's part of the food vendor's contract with the school.  The vendor won't make a profit if they are competing with vending machines and outside food vendors. All you can really do is let administration know that you are unhappy with the food selection/prices.  The more students you can get to back you up, the better chance you have of seeing change when the time comes to re-bid the contract.  Good luck!

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