Schools face nutrition and financial crunch

Federal meal regulations are providing consistent challenges for school meal programs.

WASHINGTON—A Chicago suburban district, realizing it would lose more money than it rakes in, opted out of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National School Lunch Program last month in response to strict, new federal health regulations.

But many districts nationwide can’t afford to give up federal subsidies, forcing administrators to find ways to encourage students to eat the healthier foods required by the federal rules.

The USDA’s new Smart Snacks rules, which eliminate junk food in schools and go into effect July 1, are the latest in a slew of health regulations. They are part of the federal Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act, which also includes regulations for breakfast and lunch that were fully enforced during the 2013-14 school year, and have left some food service directors struggling to find compliant, affordable recipes that students will enjoy.

More From FoodService Director

Managing Your Business
change ahead sign large

The reality is that some people don’t like change. But as long as you partner with employees, there shouldn’t be major staff fallout.

It can be tricky to find the balance between listening to your team’s point of view on the changes and avoiding giving your power away. You may accept many or few recommendations, but you need to be able to explain your decisions. Regular department meetings to complete that circle of communication take more time, but it’s more efficient than doing damage control after the fact.

I’ve seen folks refuse to do a job based on their new job...

Ideas and Innovation
fsd marketing ideas

[ View the story "Marketing and operations ideas worth stealing" on Storify ]
Industry News & Opinion

Some Washington, D.C., foodservice operators may soon be required to provide staff with paid leave, as the city council on Tuesday passed one of the most extensive paid leave plans in the nation.

Barring a veto by Mayor Muriel Bowser, the measure mandates that all private sector employers in the district offer workers eight weeks of parental time off and six weeks to care for a sick relative.

While operators will not directly compensate workers—who will be paid 90% of their wages through a government-run insurance program—they will be hit with a 0.62% increase to employer...

Industry News & Opinion

Dallas Independent School District will serve breakfast and lunch over winter break for the first time this year, Dallas News reports.

Any child under 18 will be able to participate in the meal program, which will be offered in 12 cafeterias.

The Texas district will be partially reimbursed for the meals, receiving $3.39 per lunch served and 86 cents per breakfast. The remaining costs, which include paying cafeteria staff and supervisors, will be picked up by the district.

Read the full story via dallasnews.com .

FSD Resources