School Menu Requirements
You may have heard that there will be new requirements for school meals. The new requirements are great news for our students! The new requirements will help Central Lyon Community School build on the work we are already doing to provide more fruits, vegetables, whole grains and healthier entrees in our school cafeterias.
Some of the New Requirements Include
- Increasing the amount of fruits and vegetables
- Reducing the sodium in meals over the next 10 years
- Setting calorie limits for the first time
- Increasing whole grains
- Limiting the amount of meat/meat alternatives and grains
Students will now be required to have ½ cup of fruit or vegetable on their tray for it to count as a full meal. Anything less than a full meal will be charged at as individual items. We plan to offer a variety of fruits and vegetables daily to give students more options in the hopes that choosing fruits and vegetables will be easy.
PLEASE NOTE: Portion sizes are not restricted for fruits and vegetables. Your student may ask for extra in the serving line and/or go back for second helpings of the fruit and or vegetables.
Schools are now limited on how much meat/meat alternate and grains that can be offered. This means that some of the main dishes may not be as large as they have been in the past. Remember, though, there will be more fruits and vegetables available, to fill out the meal and ensure students have plenty to eat!
In Central Lyon Community School, we have already made progress toward meeting the new requirements.
What Are We Doing
- Fresh fruit and vegetables are served every day.
- Sandwiches are served on whole wheat buns.
- All pasta served is whole grain.
- Milk that is available is only low-fat or fat-free.
- Main dishes have been changed to reduce sodium.
- Dark green and orange vegetables are served on a weekly basis.
- Dried beans have been incorporated into some of the recipes.
- Salad bars are available every day that include romaine lettuce and spinach.
We’ll face some challenges to meet the new requirements on a tight budget, but our school nutrition program will work hard to make these healthy changes for our students and make each meal something our students will enjoy!
How Can You Help?
The school nutrition program needs the support of parents to succeed! Parents can support this effort by encouraging your child to give the healthier meals a try, joining your child for lunch and talk about the healthy options, or simply introducing your child to these healthy changes at home. You are your child’s primary role model, when they see you choose healthy foods they are more likely to choose them as well.
Payment of Meals
Students and staff members deposit money into their school meal account daily, weekly, monthly or by semester. All students and staff are assigned an account number. The student/staff member will key in their personal account number on a keypad and a school employee will monitor the computer to assure that the correct account is charged. Student/staff meal accounts must be kept at a positive balance at all times.
Who is exempt from impact – a student who is approved for free meals cannot be denied a meal no matter what the balance is and a student, that has cash to pay the price of the meal that day, cannot be denied a meal even if the payment does not completely put the account in a positive balance. The JMC Lunch module has a feature that provides a report of low meal account balances. The cashier or building secretary will discretely notify students/staff when a low or negative balance is pending. JMC Messenger notifications are sent out weekly. If the household does not have e-mail access, the household will be contacted by a phone call and/or by mail.
Negative Account Balances
The school district will make reasonable efforts to notify families when meal account balances are low. Additionally, the school district will make reasonable efforts to collect unpaid meal charges classified as delinquent debt. Students and parents will be notified with a memo and/or a JMC messenger e-mail generated by the building secretary when the family meal account will be depleted in 5 days or less. (or less than $6.00) If a lunch account reaches a negative balance of $20.00 or more, the student will receive an alternate cold lunch. Students/staff will not be allowed to charge a second meal or ala carte item when the lunch account has a negative balance. This policy applies to both breakfast and lunch accounts. The alternate cold lunch will be served on a tray as all other students and be compliant with a reimbursable meal and be charge to the lunch account balance. Special diet accommodations must be made for students with doctor’s instructions.
How long can a student receive an alternate meal? An alternate meal will be served to a student until the family lunch balance is negative $100. Once the balance exceeds negative $100, meals no longer will be provided to family.
Delinquent accounts will be turned over to the superintendent or superintendent’s designee for collection. Options may include: collection agencies, small claims court, or any other legal method permitted by law.