New legislation upgrades school lunch standards

By Morgan Thomas - bio | email

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) – The health, hunger free kids act of 2010 upgrades decades-old nutritional standards for school lunch programs. This legislation puts a spotlight on the importance of what we're feeding... and teaching... kids about nutrition.

"If we can teach them good nutrition is an opportunity," said Donna Middaugh, Lufkin I.S.D. Director of Student Nutritional Services.

Registered Dietician, Tim Scallon, agrees. One of the best thing schools can do to keep our kids healthy is teach.

"We showed that when you educate students on healthy eating, they eat better," said Tim Scallon, Registered Dietician, Memorial Hospital.

A high priority of the school lunch legislation is expanding free or reduced price meals. Low-income students depend on these meals, and Lufkin I.S.D. does their best to make the most of them.

"We have to have certain components. We have to have certain amounts of meat, certain amounts of grain bread, vegetables, fruit and milk," said Middaugh.

Donna Middaugh directs Lufkin I.S.D. student nutrition. She believes that any new standards won't be a problem for the district.

"I think we have been looking at it every year we try to make an improvements to our menu," said Middaugh.

But the Registered Dietician says there's always more school lunch programs can do.

"Let's serve beans and peas twice a week. That's an economical food, it's a healthy food, in this area it's a regional food," said Scallon.

The legislation also includes advanced training for school food service workers...

"Food variety is an important part of food nutrition," said Scallon.

...Putting more options for students in the lunch line.

©2010 KTRE. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.