Why do we have a Dasani Vending Machine?


Shea Blanchard, Staff Writer

Sutton High School has never been shy when it comes to selling different beverages. At lunchtime, there are many different options to choose from based on your preferences. The school offers water, juices, and carbonated beverages such as water and soda.

Even with all these options, the school put in place a Dasani vending machine with different sparkling water flavors. There is no problem with widening the variety of beverages for students and teachers, but of all vending machines to add, why sparkling water?

In the past, the school would provide many different snack options for students. During lunch, the cafeteria workers would wheel out the snack carts filled with muffins, goldfish, and on rare occasions, fresh cookies. This was great for students, especially if you needed energy during the long school day. However ever since COVID-19 impacted our schools, the snack cart has not been seen and now limits students to fruit and whatever the lunch sells that day. It would merely make sense for the school to have a snack vending machine to please students and staff.

However, a snack vending machine has never been implemented and I still walk past the same fully-stocked Dasani vending machine every day. So what is so special about this sparkling water and why has the school kept it for this long?

I asked the principal of our high school Ted McCarthy some questions about this sparkling water vending machine and why it is here. The school already provides a free drink alongside lunch or breakfast, which includes bottled water so purchasing sparkling water from the vending machine seems pointless. I first asked Mr. McCarthy if there was a specific reason we had this Dasani vending machine, “To provide kids an opportunity to have that water after school”. 

I then asked him why we would get this type of vending machine over say a snack vending machine, which would easily be more popular and possibly makes the school a little profit, “I know there are certain rules like things that we are and aren’t allowed to have like we can’t sell coke for example or soda”. 

For my final question, I asked Mr. McCarthy if sparkling water was popular amongst teachers and students and if he ever sees anyone using it, “I have no idea, I can tell you I have never purchased anything out of it… I have never seen anyone use it”. Even though this vending machine provides more variety for students, It has been collecting dust ever since it got here.

I appreciate the time I spent with Mr. McCarthy to understand more about the Dasani vending machine. Obviously, the vending machine is not very popular amongst the students and staff here at Sutton High School. The variety of beverages offered at the cafeteria during advisory and lunch makes this vending machine pointless to most if not all students and staff. Clearly, if this machine has been here for years and the principal of the school hasn’t seen anyone use it, it cannot possibly be popular. If anyone truly wanted a change in variety when it comes to beverages at school, I would advise stopping at the center store.