Legislation to revise school lunch program passes House committee

By News Desk | May 20, 2016

Controversial federal legislation to limit funding for subsidized school lunches and change some of the program’s nutritional standards passed a House committee on a 20-14 vote May 18, and the proposal is being hammered by critics who believe it would endanger the health of American school children.

kids-school-lunch-iphoneThe bill’s sponsor, U.S. Rep. Todd Rokita (R-IN), said that his “Improving Child Nutrition and Education Act of 2016” (H.R. 5003) will save money and give schools more flexibility to meet nutritional standards.

According to a statement from the House Committee on Education and the Work Force, the bill “reauthorizes and reforms federal child nutrition programs to ensure states and schools have the flexibility they need to provide children with access to healthy meals without additional or prohibitive costs.”

H.R. 5003, if passed by both houses of Congress, would allow the Secretary of Agriculture to conduct block grant pilot projects on the state level to test alternative certification and food delivery procedures under the bill and then evaluate these projects after three years.

Under Rokita’s bill, the current requirement that free meals may be offered when at least 40 percent of the students at a given school already get some types of government help would be raised to at least 60 percent.

Democratic members of the committee and others are criticizing Rokita’s bill for what they see as a plan to cut back on the availability of free and reduced-price healthy meals for needy children.

U.S. Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA) called H.R. 5003 “more representative of child nutrition policy out of ‘The Hunger Games’” as he tried to have the legislation renamed for that popular film. However, his proposal was voted down by the GOP-led committee.

Among the groups which have issued statements opposing the legislation are the School Nutrition Association (SNA), American Academy of Pediatrics, American Heart Association, Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) and the Food Research & Action Center.

SNA President Jean Ronnei stated Wednesday that while changes are needed in the school lunch program, H.R. 5003 is not the appropriate vehicle to get those done.

“Although the House bill provides a much appreciated and necessary increase to federal reimbursements for school breakfast, portions of the bill will cause irreparable harm to federal school meal programs,” she stated.

CSPI indicated support for a bipartisan Senate legislative approach instead and asserted that H.R. 5003 would return junk food to U.S. schools.

“The bill would weaken the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program, allowing schools to substitute chips, sugary fruit snacks and trail mix for the fresh fruit and vegetables they now get as snacks through the program, and make it more difficult for low-income students to receive free meals,” CSPI stated.

Supporters say the bill’s estimated $1-billion savings over 10 years would be applied to other nutritional programs for children and that changing the program’s nutritional standards would result in children being offered food they actually like and will eat instead of food the government thinks they should eat.

Source:  http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2016/05/126489/#.Vz7GcCEppUY




Winona Area Catholic Schools tieup with Wordware for School Lunch Software

Winona Area Catholic Schools tie up with Wordware for School Lunch Software

USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.”

The link below will take you to the login page to access
your family lunch account information and current balance.

1. Click on the link to go to the Wordware website.
2. “Click for family login” in the upper right hand corner.
3. Enter your username(Family ID) and password (Pin#).
4. Select the state (Minnesota) and school name (Winona Area Catholic Schools) from the drop down list.
5. Sign in and your account information will appear.

https://family.wordwareinc.com/login
**Accounts will be updated by 4:00 pm daily but always check the date listed to be sure that it is the current date.**

WACS. Setting your child's foundation for life.  Winona Area Catholic Schools, Pre-K, Preschool, Kindergarten, and Elementrary.

Food and Nutrition Program Administration – School Nutrition Programs

Food and Nutrition Service helps local schools and districts work to decrease salt and fat, increase fiber and use low fat dairy products, whole grains, and fresh fruits and vegetables in students’ meals. Find more resources, guidelines and information about these programs on our website sections about Health and Wellness, School Nutrition Programs (especially Meal Patterns and Menu Planning) and the Food Distribution Program (see the whole grain pilot program information under Partners). The White House Task Force on Childhood Obesity provided a number of recommendations on healthy food in schools. Read the report on the Let’s Move website.

Community Eligibility Provision
Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) is a new provision that makes it easier for high-need schools to serve free meals to all students.

In order to participate, local education authorities and/or schools must meet a minimum level of identified students for free meals, agree to serve free lunches and breakfasts to all students; and agree to cover with non-federal funds any costs of providing free meals to all students above amounts provided in federal assistance. To read more, choose the Community Eligibility Provision page at left.

Smart Snacks in School
The Smart Snacks in School nutrition standards support better health for our kids and echo the good work already taking place in schools across the country. The new standards preserve flexibility for time-honored traditions like fundraisers and bake sales, and provide ample transition time for schools. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is committed to working closely with students, parents, school stakeholders and the food and beverage industries to implement the new guidelines, and make the healthy choice the easy choice for America’s young people. View more information on Smart Snacks in School.

Farm to School is a nationwide collaborative effort to connect school districts with local farmers for the purpose of serving healthy school meals while utilizing local fresh foods. Farm to School aims to meet the diverse needs of school nutrition programs in an efficient manner, to support regional and local farmers and thereby strengthen local food systems and to provide support for health and nutrition education. View more information and resources on Farm to School.

The After School Care Program is one of the School Nutrition Programs the USDA is targeting for growth. If you provide an after school care program which meets regularly, is organized and supervised and has an educational or enrichment component, you may be eligible to claim reimbursement for snacks through this program. Contact us to apply for this program.

Read the nondiscrimination statement.

Program Regulations
Current program regulations, in the federal Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), are available on the U.S. Government Printing Office website:

National School Lunch Program (7 CFR 210)
School Breakfast Program (7 CFR 220)
Determining Eligibility for Free and Reduced-Price Meals and Free Milk in Schools (7 CFR 245)

State Statutes
State statutes related to School Nutrition Programs.
School Breakfast and Lunch: Minnesota Statutes, sections 124D.111 – 124D.1195
Minnesota Statutes, section 471.345: Uniform Municipal Contracting Law
Minnesota  Statutes, section 123B.52: Contracts 

SCHOOL LUNCH PROGRAM (SCHOOL FOOD AND NUTRITION PROGRAM)

An accounting system and the necessary forms for its maintenance are prescribed by the StateBoard of Accounts. If these forms are properly maintained for your program, you will have little difficulty obtaining the information needed to prepare monthly federal reimbursement claims, quarterly financial reports, etc. Effective internal controls of cash receipts and meals served are built into the system by using one of several methods. The methods are the use of properly maintained and approved class rosters, prenumbered meal tickets, and cash registers.
Computerized cash systems could be used after submission and review by the State Board of Accounts. All cash register systems must be equipped with identification keys to indicate (1) paid student meals, (2) reduced price student meals, (3) free student meals, (4) adult meals, (5) a la carte sales and other additional categories the school corporation may wish to identify that may be required by the accounting system. The register must have locked-in audit tapes and non-resettable totals for each category. If any type of cash register system is used, the cashier is accountable for the cash registered on that machine when it is totaled and checked out.
If meal tickets are used, the tickets are issued to each ticket seller in pre numbered blocks. Each ticket seller is charged with the value of the tickets issued and must either turn in money or unused tickets to discharge his liability. A receipt must be issued to each ticket seller for the money deposited with the charter school. If a daily ticket is used, it is collected at the serving line; however, if the ticket is for multiple days, it is punched at the serving line as that day’s meal is served.
All methods to account for the cafeteria operation require that the person responsible for collecting and reporting the money received for meals be different from the person responsible for counting and reporting the number of meals served. Under no circumstances shall all duties be vested in a single individual. School Food Form SF-2, Daily Record of Cash Received, categorizes cash receipts on a daily basis and must be totaled monthly. School Food Form SF-2A, Daily Record of Meals/Milk Served, records daily the number of meals/milk served and must be totaled monthly and will be a source of information for preparation of the monthly claim for federal reimbursement. School Food Form SF-3, Cash Disbursements and Fund Balance, is used to record on a daily basis the disbursements of the School Food Service Program and together with the SF-2 acts as the source information for the calculation of the fund balance as shown on the SF-3. The disbursement categories Service Area Direction and Food Preparation and Dispensing are defined as: Service Area Direction. Activities pertaining to directing and managing the food service program for the school corporation. Food Preparation and Dispensing. Activities concerned with preparing and serving the food and beverages associated with the food service program. This includes operating kitchen equipment, preparing food, cooking, serving food, cleaning and storing dishes and kitchen and lunch room equipment.
17-2Forms SF-1, SF-2, SF-2A, and SF-3 shall be maintained on a daily basis and totaled monthly.
These monthly totals are a source of information for preparation of the claim for federal reimbursement, the quarterly financial report, etc. SCHOOL FOOD VERIFICATIONS OF ELIGIBILITY
We understand situations exist which could be a concern regarding charter schools test-checking the validity of information provided on the applications for free and reduced-priced meals. The results of test checks, are to be reported to the Indiana Department of Education in accordance with 7CFR 245.6(a). Some tests note a very high incidence of errors or inaccurate applications.
An error for purposes of the test-check is an approved application, attempted to be verified that cannot be verified by the program participants with requested income verification information (i.e.,paycheck stub, W-2, etc.). Program participants who have an application that cannot be verified are not always dropped from the free and reduced-price meal program and corrections in reporting and additional testing does not always occur. The State Board of Accounts is of the audit position charter schools shall request a written position from the Indiana Department of Education stating whether the corrective action taken was sufficient or if additional verifications need to be performed when high incidences of errors in test sample verifications are noted. The written communication to the Department of Education must also request a determination if any increases or decreases in funding will result to the charter school because of the concerns noted with the verification process.
SCHOOL FOOD SYSTEMS – PREPAID FOOD

Subsidiary records by student must be routinely reconciled to the cash balance and at month end.

The School Food Prescribed Forms and any approved computerized Forms will be required to be maintained in the following manner to accurately account for prepaid items. A column titled “Prepaid Food” is added to the Daily Record of Cash Received, Form SF-2, for recording prepaid amounts received which have not been identified as to revenue type, i.e., lunch, breakfast, etc. Amounts will be entered both in “Prepaid Food” and “Total Cash Received” for each day because cash has been received. Another column “Prepaid Food Applied” is also added to Form SF-2, which will show periodic (and monthly) activity whenever prepaid meals are identified (charged to breakfast, lunch, etc.). Amounts in “Prepaid Food Applied” must at all times equal for each day, the amounts charged to various categories, i.e., student lunch, adult breakfast, etc. that were not paid for in cash. Amounts will not be added to “Total Cash Received” because cash has been previously entered and recognized in “Prepaid Food”. You are merely transferring “Prepaid Food” to the applicable categories.
The final column added to SF-2 is “Prepaid Food Trust”, which is the running balance column which shows the difference between “Prepaid Food” and “Prepaid Food Applied”. The amounts in “Prepaid Food Trust” are deducted from the “Balance” column in SF-3 Form, School Food Service Cash Disbursements which then should equal the amount in the new SF-3 Column “Available Cash Balance.”
Amounts are not entered in “Total Cash Received” because “Prepaid Food Trust” is merely a balance column. Computerized systems must provide a list, by student, of cash balances which should sum to the “Prepaid Food Trust.”

Child Nutrition Program Integrity

The Food and Nutrition Service administers several programs that provide healthy food to children including the National School Lunch Program, the School Breakfast Program, the Child and Adult Care Food Program, the Summer Food Service Program, the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program, and the Special Milk Program.  Administered by State agencies, each of these programs helps fight hunger and obesity by reimbursing organizations such as schools, child care centers, and after-school programs for providing healthy meals to children.

This rule proposes to codify several provisions of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 affecting the integrity of the Child Nutrition Programs, including the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), the Special Milk Program for Children, the School Breakfast Program, the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP), the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) and State Administrative Expense Funds.

The Department is proposing to establish criteria for assessments against State agencies and program operators who jeopardize the integrity of any Child Nutrition Program; establish procedures for termination and disqualification of entities in the SFSP; modify State agency site review requirements in the CACFP; establish State liability for reimbursements incurred as a result of a State’s failure to conduct timely hearings in the CACFP; establish criteria for increased State audit funding for CACFP; establish procedures to prohibit the participation of entities or individuals terminated from any of the Child Nutrition Programs; establish serious deficiency and termination procedures for unaffiliated sponsored centers in the CACFP; eliminate cost-reimbursement food service management company contracts in the NSLP; and establish procurement training requirements for State agency and school food authority staff in the NSLP. In addition, this rulemaking would make several operational changes to improve oversight of an institution’s financial management and would also include several technical corrections to the regulations. The proposed rule is intended to improve the integrity of all Child Nutrition Programs.

Type:
Proposed Rule
RIN:
0584-AE08
Publication Date:
Tuesday, March 29, 2016
Comment Period Date:
Tuesday, May 31, 2016

The School Nutrition Association ‘s 70th Annual National Conference (ANC)

The School Nutrition Association has a presence in every state across the country. View links to many of the stat. SNA’s 70th Annual National Conference (ANC) will be held July 10-13, 2016! Join more than 6,500 attendees, including school nutrition professionals, industry members and allied organization representatives at SNA’s premiere school nutrition event of the year. Come prepared for a fun, educational and thought-provoking experience in beautiful San Antonio, Texas!

The Event of The Year

Join thousands of your school nutrition peers for a four-day experience unlike anything else in the K-12 foodservice industry. When you walk through the doors of the Convention Center, you’ll quickly see why ANC is known as the “School Nutrition Event of the Year.”

Final Event

Be sure to pack your “retro best” outfit for the ANC Final Event. RAIN—a tribute to the Beatles—is a spectacular concert that will take you through the life and times of the world’s most celebrated band.

Education

With four days of education, discover countless choices to gain knowledge in the areas that have a direct impact on your job. Plus, you can kick-start your professional development a day early with pre-conference sessions.

Exhibit Hall

With over 200,000 square feet of exhibit space, the ANC Exhibit Hall is the place to discover the newest and most cutting-edge food, beverage, supply, equipment and service solutions to boost your school nutrition program’s menus and efficiency.

ANC Slider 4

ANC Sweepstakes

Would you like a chance to win a free registration to ANC 2016 in San Antonio, Texas? Simply tell us how ANC helps you LEARN, LEAD & SUCCEED and you could win!

https://schoolnutrition.org/ANC2016/

 

Riverside Elementary School – Register for Star Food – Chicken!

Welcome back! We look forward to serving everyone again this school year. Remember, if you are not registered at Wordware, the lunch cashier system, go to https://family.wordwareinc.com and click the orange ‘Quick and Easy Registration’ link on the right side.

Email erdjea@sdmfschools.org or call (262) 250-6462 to request the family key you will need in step
2. You can then monitor your family lunch balance, see daily student purchases, set your own low balance email notification level and make an online payment using FeeZee, plus more! If you have any questions regarding the school lunch program, please don’t hesitate to call (262) 250-6461 or (262) 250-6462.

We are here to help in any way we can! Did you know? We are serving a higher quality chicken this year. We have premium chicken tenders, Asian orange chicken and chicken drumsticks that are all products using whole muscle chicken. Try them for lunch when they are on the menu. You won’t be disappointed! This month’s Star Food is… Chicken!

Fun Chicken Facts:
Male chickens are called “roosters” and the females are called “hens.” Baby chickens are called “chicks.”
A healthy chicken lays about 265 eggs each year.
Chickens lay white, brown, blue or green eggs.

School District of Menomonee Falls School Nutrition Department School Lunch Software

Dear Parents and Guardians,

The lunch and breakfast prices for the 2015 – 2016 school year are as follows:

Lunch Prices Breakfast Prices

Grades K – 5 Hot Lunch $2.10 Grades K – 5 Cold Breakfast $1.35

Grades 6 – 12 Hot Lunch $2.45 Grades 6 – 12 Cold Breakfast $1.40

Grades 9 – 12 Specialty Meal $2.75 Grades 9 – 12 Hot Breakfast $1.60 Reduced $0.40 Reduced $0.00

Adult Lunch $3.50 Adult Breakfast $2.25

Milk $0.40 Milk $0.40

Meeting the Healthy Guidelines

Every day at every school we offer a Garden Bar with fresh fruit and fresh vegetables to all hot lunch students! At North and MFHS daily salads are available with a variety of toppings on each lunch line. There is also a separate salad bar lunch line at the high school. We follow the National School Lunch Program regulations. We have all grains at 51% whole wheat. Weekly saturated fat is less than 10% of the total calories and zero trans-fat (this excludes naturally occurring fats). We offer a variety of milks including 1% white and fat free white, chocolate and strawberry. We also serve dark green, red/orange vegetables and beans weekly.

Family ID and Student Lunch Numbers

Your family ID number will remain the same year after year. Student and staff lunch ID numbers will also remain the same year after year.

SEE WHAT YOUR KIDS ARE EATING! Access your Family Lunch Account Online

Go to your school’s website. On the left hand side of the page, click “Meal Menus/Online Payments”. This is the link to the School Nutrition’s web page. Scroll down to click “Family Lunch Account Information”. The first time you log in, you will need your Family Key to register with Wordware, the Lunch Cashier System. Call 262-250-6462 to request your Family Key. Once you have registered with Wordware, you will then use your email address and a password you create to log in. We will never know your password, so write it down! This site shows your balance, deposits, detailed statement of what your child/ren are eating and lets you set your own low balance email notification level. You can also find the lunch and breakfast menus and nutritional information on the School Nutrition’s web page.

www.wordwareinc.com

https://family.wordwareinc.com/

https://district.wordwareinc.com

Lunch Payments- Please DO NOT include lunch money with any other school fees or dues!

Parents can still make on-line lunch account payments. Directions are found on your school’s website under “Meal Menus/Online Payments” then “General Meal Information and Forms”. There is a $2.75 convenience fee for online payments. Parents can also pay by check. Checks should be made payable to Menomonee Falls School Nutrition. Payments can also be mailed to the attention of the School Nutrition Department, Menomonee Falls High School, W142 N8101 Merrimac Drive, Menomonee Falls, WI 53051. Please do not send cash payments. Sending cash can cause problems. If the cash gets lost, it is very difficult to track down. Payments can be sent to school with your student as well. Your student can give the payment to the school secretary in the front office. He/she can also give it to a school nutrition employee in the cafeteria. Only at the High School do we accept cash for purchases for both hot lunch and ala-carte items. We do not accept cash in the hot lunch lines at any of the other schools. If a student brings cash, we have to take time out to put it in an envelope and then mark the student’s name, family ID and the amount on it for a payment. This slows down the lunch lines! Always remember to put your Family ID number on the check! If the family

name is different than the student’s name, please also write the student’s full name on the check. We would again recommend depositing $25.00 or more per student at a time. Our office requires a minimum of two business days to record payments.

Low or Negative balances.

We send out automated E-mail notifications. We start notifying the family when the account hits $5.00. Depending on the number of students in your account and if your student purchases ala-carte, it is possible your lunch account could go from a positive balance to a negative balance in one day. If we have your e-mail address in your account, you will get an automated e-mail, when your account is low. If you want a higher low balance level than $5.00, change your setting at Wordware under “Family Account” then “Change Settings – Notifications”. If you are not getting e-mails, contact us in the School Nutrition Department and we will try to help you. It is the responsibility of the family to keep their lunch account in the positive.

School Board Policy 761

According to board policy, if your family lunch account falls to a negative $2.00, the school nutrition personnel may give your student an alternative lunch. This lunch will consist of one serving of fruit, vegetables and a milk. You will not be charged for the alternative lunch for the first two days. On the third day, and thereafter, you will be charged $1.00 for each alternative lunch.

Free and Reduced Lunches

Families who are having financial difficulties are encouraged to apply for the Free/Reduced Meal Program offered throughout our district. These benefits are completely confidential. Only one Free/Reduced form per family is needed. Send it to the School Nutrition Department at the High School where it will be processed. Forms are found online on our School Nutrition web page under “General Meal Information and Forms” or at your school, if needed. Free and reduced families will be charged $.40 for milk, if your student brings a cold lunch, or you can supply your own drink. Free and reduced students must take a complete hot lunch to receive the free or reduced benefit or ala carte pricing will be charged at your expense. If your family receives public assistance, you may already be directly certified for free lunch through the state. We will mail your notification to you, if you qualify for the Direct Certification and then no paper application will be needed from your family.

Ala Carte items are available at ALL schools

The most common elementary school ala carte items are the extra entrée and the juice box. North Middle School and the High School have many more ala-carte choices available with options like healthy snacks. If your account has a negative balance, ala-carte purchases will not be permitted to be charged to your account. If your student is not blocked from ala carte purchases, your account will be charged, if these items are taken. Fill out the “Extras and Ala Carte Restriction Form” to prevent these purchases found on our School Nutrition web page under “General Meal Information and Forms”.

Thank you for your support of the school lunch program. As always, we continue to strive to improve our program so that we can serve you more efficiently and effectively. If you have any questions or concerns about the program please call us. If at any time you would like a detailed statement of your family account feel free to call 262-250-6461 or 262-250-6462.

Sincerely,

Ruth Ann Kiley-Wiedmeyer

Food Service Director

School District of Menomonee Falls

School Nutrition Department