Edmonds School Board discusses vending machine revenue decrease, possible solutions

On May 24, the Edmonds School District (ESD) School Board members discussed vending machine revenue and funding with MTHS students inputting their own opinions.

Vending machines were brought up at during Executive Director of Business and Operations Stewart Mhyre’s regular report.

Athletics directors from Lynnwood High School and Meadowdale High School joined MTHS Athletics Director Kim Stewart in explaining how the healthy foods act has changed how much revenue ASB sees due to less students buying from the vending machines.

Stewart and the other athletic directors brought out numbers from their specific schools, showing that the schools’ budget has significantly decreased in the past two years. The Board listened and offered their own possible solutions, such as buying vending machines with timers in order to follow the rule of not selling certain food until 30 minutes after school lets out.

There are a number of reasons for students buying less from the vending machines, most students saying it was due to the food sounding unappealing.

Sophomore Tessa King said she feels the portions aren’t big enough to cancel out the cost. She explained that she could buy a box of Pop-Tarts at the grocery store for $5, but in the vending machines they sell a single Pop-Tart for about $2. King would rather spend $5 and get “more bang for [her] buck.”

Other students also commented on the effects of the budget seeing a decrease, a big problem being prom. Representatives from Lynwood High School said they’ve had to do a number of seemingly meaningless fundraisers in which they didn’t even make very much money and even with this separate fundraising, their prom tickets were still the highest cost they’ve ever been, according to a student representative.

Stewart noted that 20 years ago, when he first started working at MTHS, the ASB was able to fund almost any club who asked, but now they’re “cutting more than ever.”

Stewart said he doesn’t want ESD to break the healthy foods act law and start selling unhealthy foods to students but he does hope to see a solution soon.