In the letter, schools encourage parents of presumed obese children to consult their pediatrician. Though the tactic has been supported by the state’s Department of Health, parents have expressed their displeasure with young children being classified based on their weight. Some parents argued that the methodology of the obesity test, which was administered by a school screening, doesn’t account for muscle mass, and most of all, hinders children’s self-esteem. Parents of students who were deemed underweight were also notified.
The decision to send letters to parents is an attempt by the state to curb child obesity. Obesity rates in children have doubled in the last 30 years, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Data from 2010 found that 18 percent of children between the ages of 6 and 11 are considered to be obese.