[imgbelt img=School-Lunch.gif]

Always thinking ahead, Agri Pulse reports that more than 100 retired admirals and generals signed a letter asking Congress to pass the Child Nutrition reauthorization bill “to help reduce child obesity and expand the pool of young adults qualified for military service.” 

A report released in April, “Too Fat to Fight,” showed that an estimated 9 million young adults (27% of those 17 to 24) were too overweight to qualify for the military. 

• This doesn’t have anything particular to do with rural schools, but we found it interesting that a test of teacher incentives found that they didn’t do any good.

Teachers in Nashville were offered up to $15,000 if their students showed marked improvement on standardized tests. Students in classrooms run by teachers eligible for the bonus did no better than students in other classrooms, however. 

Incentive pay is all the rage in public institutions, from schools to city and county offices. We’ve had our doubts. (Does anybody think a teacher is holding out on the kids until he or she gets a bonus?) Now there’s some evidence. 

• We missed it that Joe Miller, the Tea/Republican party nominee for the U.S. Senate in Alaska, collected farm program payments for a Kansas farm in the ’90s. All of $7,235 for seven years, reports Chris Clayton at DTN.

That got Clayton wondering where the Tea or any other party would cut when it comes to the federal budget for agriculture. Worth a look. 

• The House passed a bill by Rep. Adrian Smith, a Nebraska Republican, aimed at the shortage of veterinarians in rural communities. Smith’s bill would use federal money to expand rural vet practices. It is now before the Senate.

• The New York Times editorial page notes that 70 percent of the antibiotics used in the United States go to animals we eat, notably pigs and chickens. Antibiotics speed growth and prevent infections in confinement. 

The use of antibiotics in animals is increasing the production of antibiotic-resistant diseases. So the Times supports a bill proposed by Rep. Louise Slaughter of New York that would limit the use of antibiotics to cases of illness and emergency — and only under the supervision of a vet.

Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack opposes the Slaughter bill. The Times suggests that the Food and Drug Administration adopt regulations that would restrict the use of antibiotics in meat production. 

Creative Commons License

Republish our articles for free, online or in print, under a Creative Commons license.