Begin Main Content Area

The School Day Just Got Healthier

the School Day just got Healthier

Students can expect benefits from healthier and more nutritious food in school. Thanks to the Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Act (HHFKA), major improvements are being made across the country to transform school food and to promote better nutrition and reduce obesity.

Community Resources

Resources for families, communities and students.

Visit The School Day Just Got Healthier Toolkit, developed by USDA, for resources to help you understand the changes in school meals, access helpful tools, and take action in your school.

MyPlate Kid's Place has resources that can help children make healthier choices. offers science-based advice to help kids and their parents build healthy meals and maintain or achieve a healthy weight.  MyPlate Kid's Place provides online resources and tools for children to help make wise choices in a fun and appealing way.  Parents and teachers are invited to use the MyPlate Kid's Place resources to deliver credible information and fine "teachable moments" that will influence children's choices at home and at school.

School Food Services

Resources for HHFKA 2010 Nutrition Standards in National School Lunch and Breakfast Programs

USDA Questions & Answers on Final Rule "Nutrition Standards in the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs" SP10-2012 (V.9) (PDF)

Kansas Department of Education provides sample menus and other resources to help schools meet the challenge of serving nutritious meals that will appeal to students. The menus can be used to apply for the Healthier US School Challenge.

Iowa Department of Education provides the Iowa Gold Star 5-week Cycle Menus. The Iowa Gold Star Cycle Menus are available for all schools to incorporate fully or partially into their school meals program. The 5-week, seasonal menus offer increased whole grains, fruits and vegetables and legumes, optional locally grown produce, and healthy USDA Foods. PLEASE NOTE: the Iowa Gold Star Cycle Menu was most recently revised to meet the 2013-2014 meal pattern. The individual recipes can be incorporated into existing menus, as needed.

The Institute of Child Nutrition (formerly: National Food Service Management Institute- This Training resource focuses on Food-Based Menu Planning (FBMP) required for the National School Lunch Program (NSLP). It provides an overview of the New Meal Pattern and is part of the Recognizing a Reimbursable Meal training resource. The training includes a trainer's script, participants' handouts, and PowerPoint presentation.

The School Day Just Got Healthier Toolkit This USDA toolkit provides an audience-specific collection of resources including brochures, fact sheets, FAQs, school lessons and template to help prepare for changes to school meals.  It assists in promoting wellness, preventing and reducing childhood obesity, and improving school meals throughout the school and school district. 

Tools for Schools USDA offers topic -specific policy and resource materials to assist schools in meeting the new nutrition standards.  Refer to the latest regulations, find free nutrition education curricula, or get ideas for adding tasty, kid-friendly foods to enhance your school meals program.