PUC Network

School Nutrition

School Nutrition at PUC eCALS

Schools across the county are finding that more children start the day with school breakfast when they move it out of the cafeteria and after the first bell, making it an integral part of the school day.  These new services models make breakfast participation convenient by serving it in places where children can easily access the meal – in classrooms, hallways, or even later in the morning.

At PUC Schools we believe in supporting the nutritional health and wellness of our students and have implemented a Breakfast in the Classroom and Second Chance Breakfast Model at all PUC Schools.  We participate in the USDA National Lunch Program, providing students with Breakfast, Lunch, and Snacks daily.  In addition, PUC Schools offer “Universal Breakfast”, which provides FREE Breakfast to all students, regardless of eligibility.

Community Eligibility Provision (CEP)

Our school participates in the Community Eligibility Provision (CEP). CEP is a non-pricing meal service option for schools and school districts in low-income areas. CEP allows the nation’s highest poverty schools and districts to serve breakfast and lunch at no cost to all enrolled students without collecting household applications. Instead, schools that adopt CEP are reimbursed using a formula based on the percentage of students categorically eligible for free meals based on their participation in other specific means-tested programs, such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF).

For more information on CEP, please visit https://www.cde.ca.gov/ls/nu/sn/cep.asp.

Programs

Universal and Second Chance Breakfast

What is Universal Breakfast?

Universal Breakfast (offering meals free to all children) optimizes the impact of switching to an alternative breakfast model. The traditional means-tested school breakfast (in which the meal is free or the child pays, depending on family income) creates a sense among children that the program is just “for poor kids.” This deters participation by children from all income groups, including low-income children who most need the school meal. This is especially problematic in middle and high school as awareness of the social context grows. By offering breakfast at no charge to all children – and children, of course, are free not to participate – free breakfast for all ends the stigma, boosts participation among hungry children, and eliminates the burden of collecting fees.

If you want to learn more about Universal Breakfast, here is a useful link:
http://frac.org/pdf/frac-facts-offering-free-breakfast-to-all-students.pdf

What is Second Chance Breakfast?

With the Second Chance Breakfast (2CB) model, school breakfast is offered in the morning before school starts and during morning recess or snack/brunch break. 2CB is effective for serving students who, due to family schedules or transportation issues, are not able to eat in the morning before school begins. 2CB is also effective for students who are not hungry first thing in the morning, but do get hungry before lunch. 2CB is one strategy that helps bring the benefits of breakfast to all students.

By serving children when and where they are ready to eat, Second Chance Breakfast benefits students and schools.

About our Food Service Management Company

Better 4 You Meals (https://better4youmeals.com) proudly serves more than 250 schools across the Greater Bay Area, San Jose, Los Angeles County, Inland Empire and Orange County. Their passion and vision is to serve quality food to create a healthier future for the students of California and beyond. It is this passion and vision that continues to fuel their work and their relationships with schools.

Serving school districts, charter schools, private schools, summer camps and after-school care providers, Better4You Meals has helped drive major increases in school meal participation throughout California. With decades of combined school operation and food service experience, Better 4 You Meals is uniquely positioned to meet the needs of our schools and our students. We look forward to all that lies ahead in this Partnership between PUC Schools and Better4You Meals.

National School Lunch Program

What is the National School Lunch Program?

The National School Lunch Program is a federally funded program that assists schools and other agencies in providing nutritious lunches to children at reasonable prices. In addition to financial assistance, the program provides donated commodity foods to help reduce lunch program costs. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)   is responsible for overseeing the program nationally. In California, the program is administered by the California Department of Education (CDE), Nutrition Services Division.

What are the benefits of participating in the program?

For children, the National School Lunch Program provides a nutritious meal that contains one-third of the recommended dietary allowance of necessary nutrients. For parents, the program offers a convenient method of providing a nutritionally balanced lunch at the lowest possible price. For schools, the program enhances children’s learning abilities by contributing to their physical and mental well being. Studies have shown that children whose nutritional needs are met have fewer attendance and discipline problems and are more attentive in class.

For more information about the NSLP program, please click on the link below:

http://www.cde.ca.gov/ls/nu/sn/nslp.asp

About our Food Service Management Company

Better 4 You Meals (https://better4youmeals.com) proudly serves more than 250 schools across the Greater Bay Area, San Jose, Los Angeles County, Inland Empire and Orange County. Their passion and vision is to serve quality food to create a healthier future for the students of California and beyond. It is this passion and vision that continues to fuel their work and their relationships with schools.

Serving school districts, charter schools, private schools, summer camps and after-school care providers, Better4You Meals has helped drive major increases in school meal participation throughout California. With decades of combined school operation and food service experience, Better 4 You Meals is uniquely positioned to meet the needs of our schools and our students. We look forward to all that lies ahead in this Partnership between PUC Schools and Better4You Meals.

All PUC Schools offer an Afterschool Program which includes a FREE Supper meal or snack to ALL children under the age of 18, which is provided by our partner, Our Little Helpers Inc., and is funded through the CACFP Program.

Who is Our Little Helpers Inc.? Our Little Helpers, Inc. is a School Food Authority that manages feeding programs for schools and day-care centers funded by CACFP. They are teamed up with Revolution Foods (https://www.revolutionfoods.com/) to provide daily Supper meals at NO COST to all children participating in the Afterschool Programs at PUC Schools.

For more information on Our Little Helpers, Inc. please visit their website:
http://www.ourlittlehelpers.org/

What is CACFP? The Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) is a state and federally funded program that gives financial aid to licensed child care centers and day care homes. The objectives of the program are to improve the diets of children under 13 years of age by providing the children with nutritious, well-balanced meals. This will help to develop good eating habits in children that will last through later years.

For more information about CACFP, Please click on the link below:
https://www.cde.ca.gov/ls/nu/cc/

Wellness Policy

Due to children’s need to access healthy foods and opportunities to be physically active in order to grow, learn, and thrive; PUC Schools and its SCHOOLS members is committed to providing school environments that promote and protect children’s health, well-being, and ability to learn by supporting healthy eating and physical activity. Therefore, it is the policy of PUC SCHOOLS that:

  • The schools will engage students, parents, teachers, food service professionals, health professionals, and other interested community members in developing, implementing, monitoring, and reviewing PUC Schools-wide nutrition and physical activity policies.
  • All students in grades K-12 will have opportunities, support, and encouragement to be physically active on a regular basis.
  • Foods and beverages sold or served at school will meet the nutrition recommendations of the S. Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
  • Qualified child nutrition professionals will provide students with access to a variety of affordable, nutritious, and appealing foods that meet the health and nutrition needs of students; will accommodate the religious, ethnic, and cultural diversity of the student body in meal planning; and will provide clean, safe, and pleasant settings and adequate time for students to eat.
  • To the maximum extent practicable, all schools in PUC Schools will participate in available federal school meal programs (including the School Breakfast Program, National School Lunch Program [including after-school snacks].
  • Schools will provide nutrition education and physical education to foster lifelong habits of healthy eating and physical activity, and will establish linkages between health education and school meal programs, and with related community services.
  • A comprehensive committee, consisting of all PUC stakeholders, will participate in development, monitoring and revision of PUC Schools Wellness Policy.
  • A comprehensive committee, consisting of all PUC stakeholders will assist in menu planning and reporting survey results and data to FSMC or Food Vendor, three times a year.

To download a full copy of the PUC Schools Wellness Policy, please click here.