WCSD Child Nutrition Redesign Project
During the 2018-19 school year, the WCSD established a Lunch Experience Task Force to review and research areas of strength and growth with the District's Food Services program. The initiative was inspired by overwhelming interest from parents in the Youth Truth Survey conducted in the Spring of 2018. In June 2019, the Lunch Experience Task Force presented their findings and recommendations to the Governing Board. Please see below for the slideshow presentation, the summary of findings, and the implementation timeline.
Descriptions of the Student School Lunch Experiences
Listed below are concepts or ‘experiences’ which came out of the School Lunch Experience Task Force. Together, the concepts envision a new school lunch experience for our students, one which will engage, inspire, and empower. Further, the different concepts have taken into account how students developmental needs change as they grow. Special focus was also given to those families who are in need of a nutritional safety. This new vision will create a more positive experience for students, but also has the potential to create a more financially stable program. The student school food experience involves many components, and thus the experiences intentionally reach beyond Food Services and will involve additional Departments and school staff to successfully implement.
Quality Food: Students are served meals made with the highest quality ingredients, and are offered a variety of entrees and sides. Lunches not only meet the federal standard but also a higher "WCSD Standard" which is achieved through certification by a third party.
Food Education: Student experience positive, joyful connections to food through educational activities throughout the year both in the cafeteria and classroom. Activities are tailored to the developmental stage of the age of the students.
Equitable Access: Ensure all students have access to a nutritious lunch, regardless of family income. In additional to the Federal program categories (Free, Reduced, Paid), an additional tiered pricing specific to the Walnut Creek School District will be developed. The Reduced Price co-pay fee is waived.
Elementary School Lunchtime Experience: Students have a shared, joyful experience, connect with friends and get the nourishment they need. Adult role models play a key role, assisting in food selection and consumption. The physical layout and furniture encourages positive social interaction. Implement Smarter Lunchroom Movement principals. The serving line is set up to encourage students to select fruit & veggies. Information about the food and nutrition is provided. Ensure students, including those accessing school lunch, have 20 minutes to eat, as measured when students sit down for lunch to when they return to class. Implement recess before lunch across all WCSD elementary schools.
Middle School Lunchtime Experience: Transition the cafeteria space to a dining space where the furniture and layout encourage certain activities and support student needs. In some areas, lunch is provided in the space or very close by. The spaces bring students together and encourage social interaction and mixing beyond social circles. Designated activities occur throughout the year, promoting the lunch program while encouraging bringing students together.
Program Expansion Areas
Grab n Go Lunch for Middle: Meet the students where they are at. Students no longer need to go to the cafeteria for lunch, lunches are served from a mobile cart pre-packed so students can consume lunch in different areas across campus. WCI’s mobile cart can also be used for breakfast, catering, and other school wide events.
Grab n Go Breakfast at WCI: Grab n’ Go breakfast would be offered before school and possibly between 1st & 2nd period. Students would be allowed to eat in their classrooms, additional waste bins would be deployed.
Summer Camp Lunch: Lunches are provided by the WCSD Food Service staff for summer camp programs operating on WCSD school campuses. Eligible students receive lunch for free.
Online Pre-Ordering: Plan ahead and ensure your child's choice of lunch. Students, Parents, & Staff can go online (website or phone app) and pre-order lunches.