History of the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) •
The Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act signed into law in 1946 by President Truman. The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) is the Nation’s second largest food and nutrition assistance program. In 2006, it operated in over 101,000 public and nonprofit private schools and provided over 28 million low-cost or free lunches to children on a typical school day at a Federal cost of $8 billion for the year. One of the main goals of NSLP as identified by Congress is to promote the health and well-being of the Nation’s children. In recent years, questions have been raised about the program’s ability to meet this goal, especially as the main nutrition problem has shifted from under-nutrition to overweight and obesity. Public concern for the program has focused on whether it is contributing to the growing problem of childhood obesity and on the quality of foods available to schoolchildren. In response, many States and localities have imposed stricter nutritional requirements on both NSLP meals and “competitive foods” (other foods and beverages available in the school).School meal providers have wrestled with meeting these restrictions and other program requirements while covering rising costs and encouraging student participation. Meanwhile, issues at the Federal level include how to help school meal providers improve the nutritional quality of foods served as well as how to balance program access and integrity, particularly in regard to ensuring that ineligible students do not receive free or reducedprice lunches.
Nutrition Services has been an integral part of Falcon School District. The Nutrition department has operated according to the USDA regulations set forth under the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act signed into law in 1946 by President Truman. A key part of the regulations requires that the nutrition departments’ in districts operate as a non-profit enterprise fund. A nutrition department should maintain no-more than three months operating cost in their fund balance. Falcon’s Nutrition department has operated with fiscal conservative measures in the district for over the past 25 years thus allowing the fund balance to grow to and the department to be in the position to contribute back to the general fund of the district. The department has always been self-operated in this district. In the Falcon district it has always been important to the constitutes that each school is built with a cooking kitchen to provide the students with the highest quality and freshness of meals. This department is restructuring its program to eliminate highly processed/convince foods from the menu choices and is going to be focusing on foods that have a higher level of nutritional integrity. We are also concerned with the studies that show the relationship between food colors and high fructose corn syrups and a student’s inability to learn as effectively.