Did You Know Oct. 13 -17 is National School Lunch Week?

October 14, 2008

by Jean Saunders, HSC School Wellness Director

If you haven’t eaten lunch in a school cafeteria recently, this is a good week to change that. Across the country, school food directors are celebrating National School Lunch Week.

Each October, the School Nutrition Association (SNA) promotes National School Lunch Week with the Vote for School Lunch promotion.  The SNA promotes the five “candidates” to students, parents and the media, helping them to understand the benefits of eating lunch with the national School Lunch Program. These candidates are menus and recipes for meals that meet the USDA guidelines for school meals.

According to the SNA [pdf]:

The promotion is a fun way to get kids aware of and involved in the voting  process, especially in the build up to the 2008 presidential election. At the same time, the campaign will deliver some important messages about the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) in the build-up to National School Lunch Week (NSLW), October 13-17, 2008.  Voting will take place online at www.VoteForSchoolLunch.org. The official voting period is between August 1 and October 17 (the last day of NSLW 2008), with the winner to be announced on Friday  October 24, 2008.

The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) is a federally assisted meal program operating in public and nonprofit private schools and residential child care institutions. It provides nutritionally balanced, low-cost or free lunches to children each school day. The program was established under the National School Lunch Act, signed by President Harry Truman in 1946.

To mark this celebration, we’re taking the opportunity here at HSC to share some of the things we’re hearing about school lunch. Stay posted this week for blogs on different aspects of the school lunch program — the challenges, the good news, and opportunities to make a difference. Check back with us tomorrow to learn how large urban school districts are introducing their students to fresh, locally  grown fruits.

And, we’d love to hear about the school lunch news in your school district.