Schools may have an ethical obligation to act in response to the precipitous increase in the incidence of obesity among children. Using a bioethics framework, we present a rationale for school programs to improve the nutritional quality of students' diets. Because children are required to spend half their waking hours in school and because they consume a substantial portion of their daily food there, school is a logical focus for efforts to encourage healthy dietary behaviors to prevent obesity and its consequent individual and collective costs. We suggest that beyond strategic considerations, the concept of the common good justifies actions that may appear to conflict with freedom of choice of children, parents, and school staff, or with the interests of food and beverage companies
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