"In the long view, no nation is
healthier than its children,
or more prosperous than its farmers." - President Harry Truman, on signing the
1946 National School Lunch Act.
Through the Years
The National School Lunch Program was created in 1946 when President Truman signed the National School Lunch Act into law. The National School Lunch Program is a federal nutrition assistance program. Through the years, the program has expanded to include the School Breakfast Program, Snack Program, Child and Adult Care Feeding Program and the Summer Food Service Program. In 1962, Congress designated the week beginning on the second Sunday in October each year as "National School Lunch Week."
The video below looks at the school lunch program from the late 1930’s to the present day and includes President Obama signing the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act. One can see from the photographs some of the changes in the foods provided. There is an increase in whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean protein and lowfat dairy. (Part of the video has clips from a film produced by the USDA in the mid-60s.)
School Lunch Resources
Chefs Move to Schools program, run through
the U.S. Department of Agriculture, will help chefs partner with
interested schools in their communities so together they can create
healthy meals that meet the schools’ dietary guidelines and budgets,
while teaching young people about nutrition and making balanced and
Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 (HHFKA). Improving child nutrition is the focal point of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 (HHFKA). The legislation authorizes funding and sets policy for USDA's core child nutrition programs. The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act allows USDA, for the first time in over 30 years, opportunity to make real reforms to the school lunch and breakfast programs by improving the critical nutrition and hunger safety net for millions of children.
Final Rule (pdf): Cooperation in USDA Studies and Evaluations, and Full Use of Federal Funds in Nutrition Assistance Programs Nondiscretionary Provisions of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, Public Law 111-296 (6/29/11)
Priceless: School Lunch
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