Janesville74.4°

Energy drink decision on hold

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FRANK J. SCHULTZ
May 28, 2008
— Kids can keep drinking energy drinks in the Janesville public schools.

At least, for the moment.


The Janesville School Board voted 9-0 on Tuesday to refer a proposed energy-drink ban to committee.


Board member Lori Stottler said she was shocked to hear from teachers that third-graders are coming to school with cans of Rockstar energy drink.


On the other hand, Stottler said, she didn’t want to burden teachers, especially at the high schools, with a difficult-to-enforce rule.


A 16-once can of Rockstar contains 160 milligrams of caffeine, according to the Mayo Clinic’s Web site. That’s well over four times the caffeine in a can of Coca-Cola or Diet Pepsi.


It is those large doses of caffeine that can be consumed quickly in an energy drink that seemed to be the biggest concern for district officials.


Mat Haeger, the district’s manager of health services, and Marshall Middle School Principal Steve Salerno brought the proposed ban to the board.


Board member Amy Rashkin said she wanted officials to give parents and students enough warning about an impending ban so that the students could wean themselves from their caffeine habits.


Rashkin said it could be difficult for students to deal in school with what she called the “crash” that comes with withdrawal.



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