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La Center Food Service

Farm-To-Table Policy

Farm to School Policy
The La Center School District supports healthy eating and physical activity as important components to promote the health and well-being of its students. Good nutrition and physical activity help contribute to improved academic performance, attendance rates, behavior, and lifelong health and well-being.
As part of the efforts, La Center School District supports the Farm to School Program to connect its schools and local farms so that cafeterias are able to serve fresher and more nutritious meals using locally produced food. This policy is created to:
1. Help students eat more nutritious foods and develop healthier lifelong eating patterns.
2. Support the local economy and local farmers.
3. Integrate food-related education into the classroom curriculum.
4. Improve the quality of foods served in the cafeteria.

Goals of the Farm to School Program:
1. Staff members are encouraged to utilize food from local farms in classroom kitchens and cafeterias.
2. Staff members are encouraged to establish relationships with local farms.
3. Food service and teaching staff will work together to integrate experiences in cafeterias, kitchens and classrooms.
4. School food services will coordinate its menus with seasonal production of local farms so that school meals will reflect seasonality and local agriculture.

The La Center School District seeks to serve Washington State grown products to its students. Cafeteria staff will seek quotes for locally-produced, grown or processed items (within 200 miles) to serve to its students. A number scale from 1 to 5 will be used to determine vendor preference and location. All vendors or farmers will use good food handling practices to ensure safety of the products provided.
References: USDA, Farm to School Program
https://www.fns.usda.gov/farmtoschool/farm-school-grant-program
WSDA, Washington State Department of Agriculture
http://www.wafarmtoschool.org/Page/2/about-farm-to-school

La Center School District
Adopted: October 24, 2017

Food Service Payment Guidelines for 2017-18

Starting in the 2017-18 school year, we’re changing the way we do food service payments at La Center. In previous years, payments were made in the lunch line and tracked by hand. Starting this year, we will not take any payments in the lunch line. Instead, students and/or parents can put money into their InTouch Food Service account directly by either depositing money from home or by taking money to the relevant school office for deposit PRIOR to the beginning of their lunch period. The only exception is that 9-12th graders can still purchase a la carte items with cash. Cashiers at the high school will give change during the first semester, however, during the second semester any change will be applied to the student’s food service account.

In addition to increases in accounting efficiency, this new system allows parents to see deposits made into food service and, more importantly, to see a full history of your student’s food purchases. Students will be allowed to let their account fall 2 meals into the negative, but after that, they will be provided a cheese sandwich (in K-8) or access to the salad bar (9-12) until the balance is rectified.

Each student now has a 4-digit Food Service Number, even students that have not purchased lunch in the past. For most students, this will be the same 4-digit number it has always been. For some students who have always paid cash (Or didn’t use the lunch program), this will be a new ID number. In grades 5-12, we’ll list the food service number on the student’s schedule that’s handed out at the beginning of the year. For grades K-4, your student’s teacher will have their ID number and will distribute them at the beginning of the year.

Washington is tops when it comes to growing pears.

More pears are grown here than anywhere else in the nation, and we do it well, according to Pear Bureau Northwest.

In 2011, 1,200 growers produced a bumper crop at 457,000 tons.

In Washington, 10 varieties of pears are commercially grown, though there are a few others that you’ll find only at farmers markets and produce stands. Pear harvest begins in August and winds up sometime in October.

“The Bartletts, red Bartletts and Starkrimson come first. They’re what growers call summer pears. “The others — green Anjou, red Anjou, Bosc, Comice, Concorde, foresee and Seckel — are harvested later and are called winter pears.”

The top three varieties grown in Washington Anjou, which made up about 54 percent of the total 2012 crop, and Bartlett and Bosc pears, which yielded about 21 percent and 15 percent, respectively.

Pears are unique among fruits. They’re one of the few that don’t ripen well on the tree. Growers have found that picking them while mature but still green yields a better product. They measure the firmness and sugar content of the fruit, and when those two things are just right, they harvest.

Pears contain about 16 percent carbohydrate and negligible amounts of fat and protein. They are good sources of the B-complex vitamins and also contain vitamin C; in addition, they contain small amounts of phosphorus and iodine.

La Center School District’s Food Services Department is an essential partner in the educational mission of the La Center School District and its role in the district’s comprehensive nutrition program.  The district provides varied and nutritious food choices consistent with the applicable federal government Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

The District supports the choices of our students and their families regarding participation in their school’s comprehensive nutrition program and provides free and reduced-price breakfasts, lunches and milk to eligible students according to the terms of the National School Lunch and Breakfast programs and the laws and rules of the state.

New Foods Available in our cafeterias include…

Peruvian Garden Bean Salad
Peruvian Garden Bean Salad
HS Garden Grown Radishes
HS Garden Grown Radishes
HS Garden Grown Potatoes
HS Garden Grown Potatoes
Scratch-Made Shepherd's Pie
Scratch-Made Shepherd's Pie
Handmade black bean burritos
Black Bean Burritos
Handmade black bean burritos
Iced Whole Grain Gingerbread Muffins made fresh by Jessica Wirkkala in the High School Kitchen.
Gingerbread Muffins
Iced Whole Grain Gingerbread Muffins made fresh by Jessica Wirkkala in the High School Kitchen.
Spinach Salad
Spinach Salad
Made from LCHS-Grown Spinach!
Fresh Asparagus
Chicken Salad
Chicken Salad
Brussel Sprouts
Brussel Sprouts
Pizza
Pizza
Purple and Red Potatoes
Purple and Red Potatoes
Pita and Hummus
Pita and Hummus
Rainbow Cauliflower
Rainbow Cauliflower

Why School Lunches Are Your Best Choice

La Center schools lunches have to meet national nutritional standards. So you can be confident that your child is having a balanced meal. La Center schools provide:

  • At least one portion of fruit or one portion of vegetables with every meal.
  • High-quality meat, poultry or fish regularly.
  • Whole grain bread, other cereals and potatoes regularly.
  • Low sodium food choices.
  • La Center schools students have an unlimited fruit and vegetable bar.

Friendly cafeteria staff to help your child make the best school lunch. You may find that your previously fussy eater is open to trying new foods if they have school meals. Their friends will be having the same or similar foods, enticing them to try something different. Above all, school meals will save time. The only thing you’ll have to remember is to pay for your child’s meals. La Center schools has a smooth-running payment system that make it easy for you!!

Wishing you good nutritional health!

–The La Center Schools nutritional staff

Statement of Non-Discrimination

In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA. Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits. Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.

To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027) found online at: http://www.ascr.usda.gov/complaint_filing_cust.html, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; fax: (202) 690-7442; or email: program.intake@usda.gov.

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

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