In the 2018 School Nutrition Operations Report, 56.5% of districts surveyed offered or planned to serve vegetarian meal options. For many districts, this might include peanut butter and jelly sandwiches or meatless pizza. While this may be simple and familiar, there is an opportunity to incorporate more vegetarian meals that meet student's ever-changing taste preferences and provide a wider variety of nutritional value.
National School Lunch Week (NSLW) is right around the corner starting October 14, 2019! This is the perfect opportunity to promote the importance of your school's lunch program and emphasize why students need to eat healthy meals. NSLW helps highlight the healthy menu options you have in your cafeteria and get students excited to try new foods.
It's no secret that students can get tired of eating the same thing over and over again. Offering different and new menu items can freshen up your meals and get students excited about eating in the cafeteria. Hosting a taste test event is a great way to get students involved in choosing new menu items and learning more about their preferences. A successful taste test gives students the opportunity to try new recipes and share valuable feedback before you start serving them on a regular basis.
Getting started is easier than you think! Here are some strategies to help make your taste testing event successful:
For the past two years, MySchoolBucks and Heartland School Solutions has provided Growth Grants to school nutrition programs across the country. To date, we have awarded over $100,000 to districts who use MySchoolBucks and helped over 130 food service departments promote their nutrition programs in fun and creative ways, using funds they might not otherwise have access to. In addition to offering our food service Growth Grant program for the 2019-20 school year, we are excited to offer for the first time Growth Grants for before & aftercare programs!
Every day across the United States, approximately 500 million plastic straws make their way into landfills. That's enough used plastic straws to circle the earth 2.5 times or fill 46,400 school buses. Scientists estimate that it can take hundreds of years for a single plastic straw to decompose. With that in mind, many schools and student-led organizations across the country are looking to reduce or eliminate plastic straws on campus and in their communities.
Every year we offer free MySchoolBucks materials so districts can share the benefits of online payments with parents. To make sure we're providing the best marketing resources to districts, we surveyed over 90,000 parents to learn more about how they receive school communications and used this information to grow our offerings!
With all new designs, the school menu templates are back! These new 2019-20 school menu templates will be sure to liven up lunchtime and help you prepare for the new year.
School cafeterias serve millions of meals to students each day. And as the end of the school year approaches, so does the uneasy task of collecting unpaid student meal balances.
Lunchtime is often considered crunch time for school food service staff - for more reasons than one! Serving meals quickly and efficiently, while also making sure students have time to eat, can be a challenge for many schools. That's why any feature or method that can help speed up your serving lines, even by a few seconds, can be monumental.
One school district in Northern California found that simply using audio messages at their Point of Sale stations helped to increase their line speed and satisfaction among the students.
On Friday, May 3, food service professionals will be celebrating the 7th Annual School Lunch Hero Day. This day provides the perfect opportunity to recognize those individuals who work so diligently throughout the year to serve nutritious and delicious meals to our students. The impressions they make on each child that comes through the cafeteria is remarkable.