School Lunch Menus Add Fresh Alternatives

School lunch menus now include new fresh options in response to student tasting panels where students were given the opportunity to say what they liked.

Since September, T.C. Williams High School has been serving a greater variety of fresh and roasted vegetables on the lunch menu that were tested in terms of popularity with students. The pizza option has also been altered to make it a better quality and healthier.

These changes are in response to multiple student tasting panels that took place last year where students were given the opportunity to sample different food options.

“As a result of the feedback we received from the student panels, we upgraded the pizza and continued serving fresh and roasted vegetables, including freshly shucked ear corn at T.C. Williams. We want to provide every student with a well-balanced, nutritious meal, so they are set up for success in the classroom and for a day of learning,” said Cynthia Hormel, Director of Nutrition Services.

ACPS is about to launch the 2020 Strategic Plan which highlights a healthy meal and nutrition plan, ensuring that all students are ready to learn by having the benefit of access to nutritious, appealing school meals.

A menu offering multiple nutritious alternatives gives every student the opportunity to make educated, healthy food choices that will have long-term health, academic, and physical outcomes.

“School cafeteria managers are given flexibility with alternative food options that allows them to create a lunch menu based on their students’ population. We are seeing more schools move towards adding more fresh fruit and vegetables to the menu that are popular with the group of students they serve,” Hormel said.

ACPS has also made it easier for parents to know what their child is eating at school. The ACPS mobile app allows you to view your child’s breakfast and lunch menu options, along with the nutritional value of each meal.