Seattle Public Schools Nutrition Services department recognizes the important connection between a healthy diet and student's ability to learn effectively and achieve high standards in school. Nutrition Services fuels over 18,400 student lunches and 6,400 breakfasts each day and adheres to the highest level of national nutrition standards and provides many locally sourced fruits, vegetables and beans daily.
What's NEW with School Meals for the Fall
When students return to school in the fall, the overall school food environment will look a bit different. Over the past three years, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has put in place many guidelines to help students make healthier choices in the school cafeteria, based on the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. This year, in addition to further changes to the meal standards for breakfast and lunch, students will see changes outside of the school cafeteria as well. Food and beverages sold from vending machines, student stores and fundraisers will be affected by the new "Smart Snack" regulations.
Proper nutrition is crucial to your child's success in school. Breakfast and lunch at school provides the right mix of fruits, vegetables, dairy, protein and whole grains to allow them to perform their best.
Highlights of changes for this fall:
- A greater focus on fruits and vegetables at breakfast.
- Students will now be required to take a 1/2-cup serving of a fruit and/or vegetable at both breakfast and lunch.
- More whole-grain rich items.
- Meals contain less sodium.
- New "Smart Snack" guidelines for all food and drinks sold during the school day.
- The Seattle School Board approved Policy 6700, Distribution and Sale of Competitive Foods, on June 18, 2014.
- Click here to review Superintendent Procedure 6700SP, Distribution and Sale of Competitive Foods, for more information of the guidlines.
School meals will continue to offer:
- Calories and portion sizes that meet student needs based on grade level.
- A variety of fruits and vegetables daily; highlighting dark green, vibrant red/orange vegetables and legumes/beans.
- Lower saturated fat and zero grams of trans fat per meal.
- Limited added sugars in all meals.
Click here for a printable flyer that outlines the changes above.
Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program
The Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP) is a United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) funded program that provides free fresh fruits and vegetables to students in elementary schools where at least 50% of students are eligible for free or reduced-price meals. The purpose of the program is to increase the variety and frequency of fruits and vegetables that children eat and to positively influence their life-long eating habits. Seattle Public Schools Nutrition Services Department was awarded funds to serve a mid-morning or mid-afternoon fresh fruit or vegetable snack through the FFVP at 11 schools for the 2014-15 school year.
Martin Luther King Jr.
West Seattle Elementary
Community Eligibility Provision (CEP)
NEW! Starting September 3, 2014, Seattle Public Schools will implement the Community Eligibility Provision, CEP, program at 5 schools. These CEP schools will provide school breakfasts and lunches to ALL students at NO COST while they are enrolled in a CEP school during the 2014-15 school year.
Families do NOT need to submit a free or reduced-price meal application for students who are enrolled in a CEP school during the 2014-15 school year. If families have students enrolled in other Seattle schools, they will want to complete an application to determine eligibility for those students.
The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 authorized CEP to provide an alternative to household applications in the National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs. The intent of CEP is to imporve students' access to free school meals in eligible schools and to eliminate the burden for families who are required to complete income applications on an annual basis. CEP was piloted for a three year period in a limited number of States and is now available nationwide beginning July 1, 2014.
CEP Eligible Schools:
Bailey Gatzert Elementary
Martin Luther King Elementary
West Seattle Elementary
Free Breakfast is offered at 14 sites for the 2014-15 SY
In accordance with School Board Procedure H61.01, breakfast is available at no cost to all students, regardless of eligibility for free, reduced or full pay meals, at the following schools who on average had a students population that was 80% or greater in the free/reduced meal category during the 2013-14 SY. Please note that students are still required to take a "complete" breakfast per the federal meal reimbursement guidlines.
Elementary Schools: Concord, Dearborn Park, Dunlap, Emerson, Gatzert, Martin Luther King, Northgate, Van Asselt, West Seattle and Wing Luke
Middle & High Schools: Aki Kurose, Rainier Beach, South Lake and World School
2014-15 Department Focus
Promote School Breakfast
This year we will be piloting a Grab & Go style breakfast program at 2 schools:
- Rainier Beach High School students will be given the opportunity to "grab" a nutritious breakfast from a kiosk that will be set up on the 2nd floor of the building to allow students improved convenience during their morning break.
- Aki Kurose Middle School students will have the opportunity to access breakfast not only from the cafeteria, but also from a "grab & go" kiosk that will be set up a the main entry to the school.
Promote School Lunch
This year we will host a Food Fair on September 26th for students to provide input on new recipes and products
We work directly with schools, district staff and the media to encourage engagement, share information, and solicit input. Some of the resources we provide include:
- Free and Reduced Price Meals - applications in a variety of languages
- On-Line Payment for Meals - to electronically prepay for meal at school
- Nutritional analysis of our meals
- Food Allergies and Special Diet Requests – for students with allergies or specific dietary needs
- Nutrition Education, Physical Education and Physical Activity Wellness Task Force
- Employment Opportunities – for current open positions and opportunities for on-call substitutes, visit our Careers page