Food Service is operated by Sodexo, Inc. & Afflilates. If you have questions, please contact Marilyn Shaver, General Manager, at 847-245-8013. If you have questions on the Point of Sale (Nutri Kids), please call Anne Vaughn at 847-356-2385.
New School Nutrition Regulations Mean Changes for School Meals:
You may have heard about a change coming in school lunch this fall. It is true! After much research on school meals, coupled with the recent release of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2012, the USDA announced new government regulations that will substantially change school meal requirements for the first time in in decades. Changes will include more whole grains, more nutrient dense fruits and vegetables and a plan to significantly reduce the average sodium content of school meals over the next ten years. You will see some new menu items, some old menu items that include healthier ingredients, larger portions of fruits and vegetables and changes to how breakfast and lunch menus are planned. Students will be offered foods from five food groups (grain, fruit, vegetable, protein and dairy) and they must take at least 3 of the 5 menu items. In addition, they must always take at least ½ cup of a fruit or vegetable. Please be proactive and talk with your child about the USDA ChooseMyPlate. We will use this identifier to try and help students put into practice the guidelines needed to help them build healthier meals. For more information on ChooseMyPlate, please visit www.choosemyplate.gov.
If you have any questions, please feel free to call your food service general manager,
Marilyn Shaver at
Let’s Move and Healthy Hunger Free Kids:
Recently the news in school lunch has been about the move to healthy meals. There are two main reasons why we are hearing about and seeing changes to school meals. First, school meals are required to mimic the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. These guidelines are updated every five years, but schools meal regulations have not seen significant changes in many years. The new regulations for school meals complement the recommendations outlined in the Dietary Guidelines. (http://www.cnpp.usda.gov/Publications/MyPlate/DG2010Brochure.pdf) In addition, Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign to improve physical activity and eating habits and the Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act of 2010 have stimulated many changes to communities, schools and school meal programs over the past couple years. We anticipate the momentum behind this movement will continue to grow. More fruits and vegetables, more whole grain and lower sodium are the highlights of the new regulations for school meals. Together the “Let’s Move” campaign, the Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act, the efforts of our school leaders and your support will help students increase their physical activity and change their diets to support a healthy lifestyle and brighter future.
Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act and Lake Villa School District
This fall there will be some changes to the School meal requirements that are being mandated by the United States Department of Agriculture. The law will require more whole grains, more and different types of fruits and vegetables and foods with lower sodium. You may have heard about these changes on the news. Here atLakeVillaschool district, we began making similar changes to our menus a few years ago. Many of our menu items are now made with healthier ingredients such as whole grains, we have been modifying recipes to include less sodium and saturated fat, we have switched to only 1% or non-fat milk, our snacks and beverages meet nutrition guidelines established for lower sugar, fat and sodium, and our menus include more fruits and vegetables. We will be educating your child about the importance of maintaining an active lifestyle and using the USDA ChooseMyPlate as a symbol of how to build healthier meals. We have always encouraged students to try fruits and vegetables, but students will now be required to take at least ½ cup of fruits and vegetables every day as a part of the new regulations. We encourage you to speak with your child about these requirements and encourage them to consume these foods as well. It’s not good nutrition if it’s not consumed!
Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act
Some changes you may notice…
- 1. We will begin using a Food Based Menu planning system
Every meal will consist of five components: grains, meat/meat alternatives, fruit, vegetable, and milk. In order to be considered a student meal, the student must select three of the five components. We encourage students to select all five components to receive a balanced meal.
- 2. Every student will be required to take 1/2 cup of fruit or vegetable each day to make a reimbursable meal.
We follow a plan that is called “offer vs. serve.” This means students must be offered foods from all five food groups, but they are only required to take a full portion of three of the five offered items. Under the new regulation, students must take at least ½ cup of either a fruit or vegetable. Larger portions of vegetables and fruit will be available to those students who want them.
- 3. A legume will be offered at least once a week
Legumes are from the bean/pea family, but they are not green beans or green peas. Legumes are full mature beans, such as black beans, kidney beans, pinto beans. You may see these items offered as a side item, such as roasted garbanzo beans, bean dips, refried beans with a burrito or even as beans and rice. Please encourage your child to try these menu items as they are excellent sources of protein and fiber.
- 4. French fries will always be baked, not fried.
- 5. All snack and beverage items will be compliant with the Alliance for a Healthier Generation (AHG) guidelines. AHG is a joint collaboration between the American Heart Association and the William J. Clinton Foundation. We are awaiting additional regulations from USDA that specify nutrition guidelines for snacks and beverages.
Whole Grains in our menus
The new Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act will require school to provide more whole grain-rich foods instead of refined grains. This means that changes such as replacing white bread and rolls with whole grain equivalents and white rice with brown rice will become more obvious on the menus. Even things such as pizza crusts and breading on chicken nuggets will change to whole grains. Starting in the fall 2012, 50% of all grains served in lunch must be whole grain-rich. By fall 2014, 100% of all grains served at lunch and breakfast will need to be whole grain-rich. Often, students won’t even notice the change. In fact, we have made a number of these changes over the past few years. Sometimes they will notice and our experience tells us that they will adjust to most of the changes in taste. We will continue to work with manufacturing partners to develop great tasting products and recipes that meet or exceed these nutrition guidelines, as well as taste great!
More Fruits, Vegetables & Beans
The new Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act includes requirements to serve more fruits, vegetables and beans on a daily basis. The rule also includes a minimum serving for dark green and red-orange vegetables. These new categories include things such as:
Dark Green Red/Orange Beans
Bok Choy Acorn Squash Black Beans
Broccoli Pumpkin Kidney Beans
Romaine Lettuce Sweet Potatoes Garbanzo Beans
Turnip Greens Tomato Juice Navy
Q: I heard there is a new law about school lunch, is that true?
A: Yes, in December 2010 the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act (HHFKA) was signed into law. The act is the result of several months of debate and negotiations in the US congress and was passed and signed into law. The bill has many provisions that impact school lunch, school breakfast, Woman Infants and Children services (WIC), as well as other federal nutrition programs. A large portion of the bill focuses on school lunch and breakfast programs.
Q: What is the intent of the new law?
A: The United State Department of Agriculture, the agency which oversees meal programs says:
“This legislation includes significant improvements that will help provide children with healthier and more nutritious food options, educate children about making healthy food choices, and teach children healthy habits that can last a lifetime.”
Q: Does this new law have anything to do with Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign?
A: The First Lady’s campaign to end childhood obesity has been considered in this legislation. Most of the aspects of the nutritional portion of her program are incorporated into HHFKA.
Q: What are the improvements expected in school meals?
A: There are several changes expected in school meals. Over the next few years changes to school breakfast and lunch programs will be phased in. Please see below for a detailed description:
One of the most significant changes includes the inclusion of whole grain on the menus in the place of refined grains. Bread, pizza crust, rolls and buns will now need to be “whole grain rich”. Beginning July 1, 2012 at least half of the grains served must be whole grain rich. In two years, the requirement will increase to 100% of grains served.
Fruits and Vegetables
Another major change will be the inclusion of more nutrient dense fruits and vegetables. Fruits and vegetables will now make up a larger portion of the meals served on daily basis. In addition to a larger portion of fruits and vegetables, lunch meals will now allow up to 2 cups of fruits and vegetables to be served as part of a meal. It also sets minimums on how much of fruits and/or vegetables must be taken by students. For most students, that minimum will be ½ cup of total fruits and vegetables. “Nutrient dense” item includes the sub-groups “dark green” and ‘red/orange” vegetables. Examples of those vegetables are: broccoli, kale, mustard greens, acorn squash, pumpkin, sweet potatoes. These items are example of some of the types of foods school menus will now include.
For the first time, the new law sets standards for sodium in school lunch and breakfast menus. A sodium reduction is required to be phased in over a 10 year period. During that period, total sodium must be reduced by more than 50%.
Q: I heard that Pizza is now considered a vegetable, is that true?
A: This is untrue. During debates last fall, Congress voted to consider tomato paste as a vegetable portion. The tomato paste used to make pizza can be considered a vegetable, but the rest of the pizza is not considered a vegetable.
Q: When will these changes take effect?
A: Changes to the nutrient standards will take effect on July 1, 2012. After that date, all school meals (breakfast & lunch) must meet the new standards.
Q: It sounds like food will be more expensive, where will the money come from to pay for this?
A: HHFKA authorizes additional federal support for school lunch up to and additional $0.06 per meal served. These new funds are intended to offset the increased costs associated with the new law. However, the USDA expects school meals to increase between $0.17 and $0.24 per meal once the law is fully implemented.
Q: How will this affect my child’s lunch?
A: Your child will begin to see different items and/or different ingredients used in the preparation of his/her meal. For example, your child may be served pizza including a whole grain crust instead of refined grains. The fruit and vegetable selection may change to include more fruits and vegetables or beans and those portions may be larger.
Q: What do I need to do?
A: Discuss the upcoming changes with your child(ren). When they return to school in the fall, some menu items may be different and will take some adjustment to the new tastes. Our experience tells us that there is an adjustment period to new flavors. Given the opportunity to adjust, students do become accepting of new items. It is also important to communicate to the food service management about your thoughts and ideas. A successful transition depends on students participating in the program and sharing likes and dislikes.
Q: What if I have questions?
A: Please feel free to contact the general manager of food service in your schools. Marilyn Shaver can be reached at 847-245-8013.
You will notice the inclusion of these types of items more often on menus and in recipes in the future. The goal is to increase consumption of nutrient-dense fruits and vegetables and teach students about healthy food choices that will last a lifetime.
Online Prepayments, Interactive Menus, Nutrition Education
Access your account Here
Need your child’s Student ID?