Dear Parent /Guardian,
The National School Lunch Program (NSLP), in which Weston Public Schools participates, has recently improved the nutrition/meal requirements for students from pre-Kindergarten through twelfth grade. At the same time, the Massachusetts guidelines for non-NSLP foods offered to students has changed.
These modifications include:
New requirements for school lunch & breakfast (Federal Government)
- Reimbursable meals must include a fruit or a vegetable (MS & HS)
- Specific categories of vegetables must be served over the course of a week
- Leafy Green
- Other (including asparagus, green beans, zucchini, etc)
- Milk must be fat-free (flavored/unflavored) or 1% low fat (unflavored)
- Serving size of protein & grains will decrease
- Decrease sodium over the next 10 years
- Increase whole grains
New requirements for a la carte items (MA)
- No sale of competitive foods 30 minutes before or after school or during the school day
- 100% fruit juice 4 oz container
- Sodium 200 mg per serving or less
- Sugar no more than 35% of the calories in a serving
- No caffeine
- Foods must have 200 calories or less per item
- No artificial sweeteners
- All bread or grain-based products shall be whole grain
Here are some websites with more information about the regulations:
The National School Lunch Program started in the 1940’s as a way to address malnourishment in children and to provide support to American farmers. The program has adjusted and changed over the years to meet the changing needs of students. The new changes, stipulated in the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act, are inspired by the dramatic increase in childhood obesity in the United States and the decreased consumption of fruits, vegetables, and milk. As a participant in the National School Lunch Program, Weston must comply with both the state and federal regulations. The program is also seeking to educate youth about food – whole foods and the nutritional support they provide.
Weston Food Service is committed to offering a variety of healthful foods to the students. We are open to suggestions and recipe ideas that will excite the students while helping us to meet the nutritional requirements stipulated by the government. We need your support, especially during this challenging transition.
Please encourage your children to purchase a reimbursable meal which will need to include a ½ cup serving of fruit or vegetables, an entrée, and a milk. At $2.50-$3.00, this is truly a value meal worth buying and it will meet 1/3 of your child’s daily dietary needs.
Some interesting and fun facts about Weston's food service:
- We procure ground beef that is pasture raised and from New England
- Romaine lettuce has replaced iceberg lettuce which provides little nutritional value
- Pastas are whole wheat
- Low fat cheese used daily
- We buy as much produce as we can from Weston’s own Land’s Sake
- Our longest serving staff member has worked in Weston Public Schools for 18 years; our newest has been here two years.
Things to look forward to next fall:
- Taste Test Tuesdays – Parent volunteers welcome! If you would like to help out, please contact Asta Garmon 781-786-5376 firstname.lastname@example.org
- B.Good burgers
- More farm fresh local produce
- More scratch cooking – cuts down on fat & salt
- Apple Festival
- Quarterly coffees with Tess Sousa, the Director of Food Service
- Online suggestion box : email@example.com
Weston Food Service remains steadfast in our commitment to serving the students and the community. The changes outlined here will help students and staff make healthful food choices and support a strong culture of wellness in our district. We have a lot to look forward to next fall and we are excited to roll out some of our new recipes!
Director of Foodservices
Weston Public Schools