Food Service - F.A.Q.  

1. Who is responsible for developing the menu?

The Menu Planning is developed by the Director of Food Services with input from food service staff and school sites. In addition, we encourage input from students, employees, faculty, and parents.

2. How can I apply for free and reduced price meals for my child?

You need to complete the Application For Free and Reduced Price Meals, sign it, and return it to the cafeteria. The application only takes a few minutes to fill out and can be done at any time during the school year. The application form and instructions are available at the school office. You can also contact our Food Service Department at (209) 632-7514 ext. 1203 for more information.

3. Just how healthy are school meals?

VERY! All meals are low in fat and provide well-balanced servings from each food group. School lunches provide one-third of the Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA) for calories, protein, vitamins A and C, iron and calcium. While there are different specific requirements for each age group, a school lunch includes: meat/meat alternate, bread/grain products, two or more fruits and/or vegetables, and milk. We offer an occasional dessert while ensuring that fat, salt and sugar are held at a minimum.

4. Why should my child buy lunch at school rather than bring it from home?

The school lunch assures that your child is receiving a nutritionally balanced meal. More variety (an established dietary guidelines) is easier to achieve through school menus. Also, the subsidized school lunch is less expensive than a lunch of equal nutritional value prepared and packed at home.

5. Are there other advantages to my child participating in the school lunch program?

Students learn good nutritional habits that provide a basis for better health throughout their lives. School lunches contain a variety of foods and offer students exposure to new foods. The better-nourished student will generally have better attendance, be more attentive, and have more energy to cope with school-day opportunities.

6. What should I do if my child has food allergies?

Students with allergies are permitted food substitutions “when supported by a statement from a recognized medical authority that includes recommended alternate foods.” A recognized medical authority may be a doctor, a nurse, or a physician’s assistant. The school will do its best to accommodate the student’s needs. For example, if a student is allergic to milk and a medical statement is on file, 100% fruit juice will be offered as a substitute.

7. Can students receive "seconds" if they are still hungry?

The intent of the National School Lunch Program is to provide "one meal per child per day.” Food service supervisors plan and prepare meals based on the average number of students who participate in the lunch program. In order to control costs and portions, free second entrees are not available. If a child is still hungry after completing the meal, he/she may have as many additional fruits and vegetables as can be eaten during the meal period. Students may purchase a second meal

8. Can students charge their meals?

We prefer NO CHARGES but we do allow (1) ONE lunch or breakfast to be charged, expecting payment for this meal the following day. If an account has insufficient funds for a full lunch a partial charge will also be allowed. You may bring money to the cafeteria or if this is not possible you may call the Food Service office at 634-6672 ex.1234 or ex. 1203 to make other arrangements. We do not allow ANY CHARGES of snack items at any of the Snack Bars. All lunch money deposited in an account can either be used for lunches or on the Snack Bar. Parents have the ability to limit the amount spent each day or to ban their child from using the Snack Bar. Please contact the Food Service office at 634-6672 for further information concerning these procedures.

Note: The school food service program is self-supporting and does not receive financial support from the general fund. As a result, Food Service (like any other business) needs to break even in terms of revenues versus expenses. It is important, therefore, that children whose families do not qualify for free meals pay for those meals.
With the computerized accounting system, parents can place money into their child’s Food Service account. Parents need to be aware that the account needs to be paid in advance. They can pay for a day, week, month, or for the entire school year.

9. Can kindergarten children eat at school?

YES, they can eat at school if their schedule for arriving and leaving school coincide with meal times. All students enrolled in school are eligible to eat school meals. If the family is approved for free or reduced meals, kindergarten students are automatically eligible to receive meals also. However, because kindergarten children may not arrive at scheduled meal times, parents should contact the school's office for their policy in supervising kindergarteners during school meals.

10. Are sack lunches available for field trips?

Yes. Teachers have Sack Lunch Order Forms to request sack lunches for their students when planning a field trip. Since a sack lunch is in place of a regular lunch, it is charged to the child's meal account. Sack lunches contain a sandwich, chips, fresh veggies, cookie and milk or juice. Sack lunches need to be ordered at least three days in advance.

11. What about the student who may still be hungry after the meal?

While not all students fall into this category of still being hungry, there are those who may have eating habits that are based on bulk rather that nutritional requirements. The school lunch program is based on nutritional requirements. We do offer certain items of which students may choose to take additional servings. Such as an additional salad or portion of fruits or vegetables.