High-quality, Kid-tested, Equitable School Meals Earn CNS Five Stars
Child Nutrition Service staff work tirelessly to provide wholesome, “kid-approved” meals each day to thousands of children in Redwood City School District (RCSD). The department’s dedication and commitment to the nutritional wellbeing of students was recently applauded by the District community.
RCSD’s Board of Trustees recognized CNS for its efforts and flexibility in serving children well-rounded meals in times of high need and change, particularly over the course of the past three years.
During distance learning, CNS quickly pivoted to drive-thru meal pick up opportunities for all RCSD families. The department also collaborated with transportation staff for meal deliveries to ensure the nutritional needs of students were met.
Since the return to campus, CNS have been preparing a high volume of meals to meet the guidelines for California’s Universal Meals Program which provides no-cost breakfast and lunch for all students, a first in the nation.
CNS has remained focused on quality of taste and ingredients during the launch of this program by creating “fast scratch” menu items that allow staff to make large batches of nutritious food at school sites. Meals also include fresh and local produce as part of the department’s Harvest of the Month program.
All school meals follow the USDA's nutritional guidelines--whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and low fat dairy products, with limits on sodium, saturated fat, and trans fat. Breakfast has 350-500 total calories and lunch has 550-650 total calories.
Pictured: Child Nutrition Staff members at Garfield School pack student lunches. At the start of the pandemic, RCSD readjusted its menu and service model in order to help families pick-up student meals for the week. The District stopped preparing meals at school and instead handed out pre-packaged, non-perishable goods that would last families for a week.