Healthy eating and physical activity solutions for kids

Celebrating What’s Right with School Nutrition

Celebrating What’s Right with School Nutrition 

What IS right with school nutrition? An awful lot, actually. I wish you could have sat in on the Choose MyPlate with School Nutrition session at the School Nutrition Association conference in Denver.

One thing that is right may surprise you. It’s not the obvious - healthier foods being served, and EATEN, in schools across the country even before the new guidelines were established. It’s length of service in school food service compared to any other foodservice job...Others (restaurant, fast food, corner store, hospital, etc.) have high turnover rates; not so with school food service.

It is not uncommon to have staff celebrate 20, 30, or MORE years working in school meal programs and that was the case with those I had the privilege to share time with this week at the annual conference in Denver. What is the sticking point? I asked that in my sessions, over 200 attendees in one and over 100 in another and the resounding answers were KIDS and TEAMWORK.

As I shared thoughts, challenges, ideas, and humor, the nod of heads were many and the visits after the sessions heartwarming.

  • These folks are ready for the changes that MyPlate, new meal pattern guidelines and the HealthierUS School Challenge program have brought to them.
  • They are ready to step up and step out and provide leadership in their schools for healthier school environments.
  • They need the tools and the support to make a healthy difference for the kids they serve so well.

I only hope I gave them a few tools and from my heart, the support to step up and help make healthy living a habit!

"Your ideas are so simple, so real, so right for promoting school meals, MyPlate and participating in the HealthierUS School Challenge Program. This was one of the best sessions I've attended here!" SFS Director, Florida

"I needed to hear this! I know my team can make a difference but no one at our school sees that. You have given me tools to step forward and not wait any more, thank you!" SFS Director, Minnesota

Want more on celebrating what’s right in school nutrition? Try these links:

School Nutrition Association Attendees Hear, See, and Do... Choose MyPlate!

School Meals That Rock

Tray Talk

Innovators in School Nutrition - July 2012

School Nutrition Association