About 71% of school districts reported unpaid student meal debt during the 2012-13 school year, according to the School Nutrition Association. Unpaid meal debt in larger districts can reach as much as $4.7 million. Districts are working to tackle the challenge with formal and informal solutions. SNA spokeswoman Diane Pratt-Heavner recommends policies "that respect students while preventing escalating unpaid meal debts." The Atlantic online
The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans issued by the Department of Agriculture and HHS call for limiting added sugars and less protein for teen boys and men, while urging people to focus on overall healthy eating instead of individual nutrients. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said people "don't need to make huge, fundamental changes" because "small changes can add up to big differences." The New York Times (free-article access for SmartBrief readers) (1/7), USA Today (1/7)
Serving the right snacks at school can actually improve nutrient intake and lead to smarter student choices.
The goal of the Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Act is to improve overall child nutrition, and to advance the nutritional quality of all foods and beverages sold and served at school. The Smart Snacks in School rule focuses specifically on providing kids healthier food for the entire school day, not just at breakfast and lunch. And the rule’s oversight extends to any foods and beverages sold a la care in the cafeteria, at snack bars, in school stores and through vending machines.
The new standards require schools to serve snacks whose main ingredients are more whole grain, low-fat dairy, fruits, vegetables or protein. The rule also places limits on the amounts of sugar, fat and sodium content in foods served at school.
All Duneland school cafeterias have implemented new meal pattern guidelines for school lunches. The new guidelines ensure that meals are healthy, well balanced and provide students the nutrition they need to succeed at school. School meals offer students milk, fruits and vegetables, proteins and grains, and also have strict limits on saturated fat and portion size. All school lunches meet new standards requiring:
Applying the new meal pattern guidelines to our menus will help provide your child/ren a high quality, nutritious lunch. We always strive to offer Duneland students’ healthier and delicious choices.
School meals are a great value and continue to be a significant convenience for busy families. Meal costs are: Grades K-6 Breakfast -$1.35, Grades 7-12 Breakfast - $1.50, Reduced Breakfast $0.30, Grades K-6 Lunch – $2.45, Grades 7-12 Lunch $2.65, Adult Lunch $3.50. Parents can prepay online using mypaymentsplus.com, or at school by using a check or cash.
Now is the perfect time to encourage your child/ren to choose school lunch. We look forward to welcoming your children to the cafeteria this school year. Find out more about Duneland’s healthy school meals by exploring the links to the left!
Wishing you and your child/ren good health and much success for a GREAT 2013-2014 school year!
Children’s Eating Capabilities