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Nutrition Survey Results
School Nutrition Shared Services is interested in how students, staff and parents perceive the meals that students are served at school. We created surveys and invited everyone involved to complete and submit a survey to help us understand our customers’ likes and dislikes. The survey results will provide us with valuable information which we can use to improve our school nutrition environment.
We welcome your comments and concerns anytime. Email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org Our office is located in Collierville but we serve five municipal districts – Arlington, Bartlett, Collierville, Lakeland and Millington.
Listed below are some of our responses to the most frequently answered questions on the surveys.
What food item would you like to see added to the menu?
No pre-packaged, warm-up meals
All meal options are prepared in the school kitchen.
Fresh fruits and vegetables
All schools offer fresh fruits and vegetables every day. For example, we serve fresh vegetables with dip, apples, bananas, oranges, etc.
Fried chicken, French fries, grilled items
No items are deep fried at the schools. We do offer oven fried chicken, oven baked fries and a variety of grilled items such as chicken and flame broiled beef patties.
Fish (tilapia, salmon, catfish), fried or baked
The price of some food items are just not practical for us to purchase due to cost.
Hash browns, tator tots, chicken nuggets
We are restricted on the number of calories and sodium we can serve students during the week. We do offer chicken nuggets and a variety of potato choices. However, nutritional requirements may restrict how often it can be served.
Better biscuits, not whole grain
USDA mandates that only whole grain baked items be served in K-12 schools. All public school districts in the country must serve whole grain items. However, we have been granted an exemption for certain grain products for the 2015-2016 school year. This will allow us to serve a biscuit that should be more acceptable to our customers.
Baked potato bar & salad bar
The serving areas are limited in space. We have added a loaded baked potato to our menu and we offer salads daily.
Wraps – chicken, steak & vegetable
Currently we offer chicken fajita wraps and deli wraps. We will be expanding our wraps and sandwiches in the coming school year.
Serve smoothies & icees
We currently have some schools that serve slushies and smoothies. We hope to expand to more schools in the coming year.
Deli Type Sandwiches
Hot and cold deli sandwiches are already on the menu. However, we are increasing our sandwich selections for the coming school year.
Toppings for appropriate items, such as tacos and hamburgers
There should be toppings for tacos, hamburgers, hot dogs, etc., available on the lunch line. This will be re-emphasized with the cafeteria staff.
What are some of the reasons you do not allow your child to buy food from the cafeteria?
Food is too expensive
A school lunch is an excellent value. There are few places you can get a healthy meal with an entrée, fruit, vegetables, and milk for $2.75 in elementary and middle schools, and $3.00 in high schools. Also, USDA only covers a certain amount for each meal based on free, reduced and full pay status of students.
Food isn’t made fresh at the school
All meals are prepared in the school kitchen. We do not operate a central kitchen where food is shipped to various locations. The food served at breakfast and lunch is prepared by the school nutrition staff, onsite. We do as much “scratch cooking” as possible. Items from food manufacturers are prepared onsite according to directions. We also batch cook to the line so items are as fresh as possible. (Batch cooking means cooking items as needed instead of preparing food ahead of time.)
Wants foods made from scratch, nothing processed
This is certainly desirable, but cost prohibitive. Making everything from scratch would require hiring more workers in the kitchen and buying additional ingredients. This would mean increasing meal prices. We offer a variety of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and some entrees, that are not processed.
Too many carbs and not enough protein
Our meals meet the daily protein requirement. There is always some form of protein (meat, beans or dairy) offered at each meal.
What cultural food items would you like to see served in the cafeteria?
We are looking at adding more Italian and Mexican choices to the menu. We will also be featuring new cultural menu items next school year.
Which vegetables and fruits are you interested in buying at the cafeteria?
We will continue to offer a variety of seasonal fruits and vegetables. We are also enhancing our cooking methods to improve the quality of our fruits and vegetables.
What changes would you like to see in the school nutrition program?
Make breakfast and lunch free.
Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) allows school districts with a high number of students who qualify for meal benefits, to offer lunch and breakfast at no charge. Arlington, Bartlett, Collierville, and Lakeland do not qualify for this program and cannot offer free meals to their students.
Place microwaves in cafeteria so students can use them to warm up food from home.
This is a liability and safety issue so we cannot offer microwaves for use by students.
Wants food from McDonald’s, Chick-fil-A, Backyard Burgers, etc.
Tennessee law requires all food served in school cafeterias must meet the same requirements as the National School Lunch Program. Most of the food from fast food outlets make it difficult to meet the nutritional needs of our customers. We offer similar items that meet requirements that we hope you will enjoy.
Longer lunch times to allow kids to eat
The lunch times are set by the principal. We are starting some Grab and Go serving lines which should help. Grab and Go are quick pick-up meals and items that allows for faster service. Also, knowing your PIN number and having money already deposited on your account helps expedite your transaction and thus, the line moves a lot faster.
Allow students to sit where they want and talk during lunch
This is a decision made by administrators at the school. We are willing to work with administrators to see if adjustments can be made.
Serve other beverages other than just milk, such as juices, water, soda
Other beverages are offered a la carte such as 100% juice and water. USDA requires milk be offered with the meal. Carbonated beverages cannot be served to students in elementary and middle schools.
Better pizza – what you have now is nasty and hard
Pizza is one of our customer’s favorite menu items. We will certainly look again at quality and preparation methods.
Last year, slushies were a big hit; can we have them back?
We started slushies during the second semester and will continue to offer them in 2015-2016.
How do you know the daily lunch and menu choices in the cafeteria?
You can visit School Nutrition Shared Services website to view the menus anytime. We have the menus, as well as links to nutrition articles, pricing, and a link to MyPaymentsPlus. Our office is located in Collierville but we serve five municipal school districts. We are working with principals to have the menu announced daily. Also, look for postings of menus in other sections of the school.