EdSource: California School Districts Are Offering Healthier Food Choices for Students and Providing Free Meals

Egg white breakfast wraps, vegetarian ramen, gumbo, glazed carrots and organic cheeseburgers aren’t just trendy restaurant offerings — they’re on some of the breakfast and lunch menus at California schools.

With an influx of state and federal funding aimed at expanding access to school meals, California districts are ramping up food production, upgrading menus and using more fresh, healthy ingredients than before. School meals will continue to be free for all California students, as they have been since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.’

Providing healthy, appealing meals goes a long way to helping our students focus on their learning.’Bob Nelson, Fresno Unified superintendent

Education leaders such as Los Angeles Unified Superintendent Alberto Carvalho hope that by ensuring all students get fed for free while at school, and improving the quality of meals, districts can combat food insecurity experienced by families in their area.

“It’s a human right to have your child fed every single day, no questions asked,” Carvalho said at a recent news conference. “So bring your children to school early enough for them to benefit from breakfast, tell them to walk the line and benefit from the free lunch and let’s enjoy it.”

Carvalho said his favorite new item on LAUSD’s menu was the kung pao chicken, which has a honey glaze and comes with brown rice and broccoli. He also tasted the district’s new cinnamon rolls, ramen bowls, smoothies, and yogurt-and-fruit breakfast bowls and said he enjoyed them all.

Read the complete article at EdSource.