On December 13, 2010 the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 was signed into law. This historic legislation marked the most comprehensive changes to the school nutrition environment in more than a generation. These new guidelines mean changes are occurring in our cafeterias.
You may have seen quite a bit of media coverage the first week of school on some of the local television stations regarding changes to meals that schools serve to students. School lunch and breakfasts are regulated by the federal government and the purpose of the legislation is to help reduce child obesity in our nation and to ensure that students receive a nutritious breakfast and lunch.
You can find the requirements on our district website (rockdaleisd.net) by clicking on the Departments tab and then clicking on the Food Service Tab. There are two documents that help explain some of the changes.
One document is a short explanation of “What do I need to have on my plate?” and the other document is titled, “Meal Components”.
Basically foods are broken down into five components; fruit, vegetables, protein, grain, and dairy. The changes in the new requirements reflect a balance between these components including serving more fruits and vegetables and reducing the amount of calories.
Reducing calories sometimes means reduced portions of grains and proteins. Other changes to the menu should include a variety of fruit and vegetables over the next several weeks. Also, more whole grain foods will be offered during the next two years.
These changes will take time and some adjustment, but RISD has wonderful food service employees that understand the changes and are prepared to offer the most nutritious meals possible under the new guidelines.
We will also have a new food service director coming on board next Monday who is excited about working in RISD. You will be able to communicate with her if you have comments or questions.
In the mean time if you have any questions or comments regarding our food service department please contact your child’s campus and they will find an answer for you.