School Nutrition Announcements October 3, 2018

School Nutrition Programs Policy

All USDA memos for School Nutrition Programs can be found here

Instructions for Submitting 2017-18 School Year Food Safety Inspections Report
Due October 31, 2018
Either the Food Service Director or Claims Contact for the district may enter the information. Thank you to those who have already entered the information!
1.      Login to MAPS
2.       Click on School Nutrition Programs.
3.       Click on Applications.
4.       Click on Food Safety Inspections.
5.       Click on Modify for 2017-2018.
6.       For each site, click on None, One, Two, Three or More for the number of inspections received at that site during the previous school year.
7.       If fewer than Two inspections were received, click on the reason.
8.       When finished entering for each site, click Save at the bottom of the page.

Food Safety Inspections Requirement
School Food Authorities that serve meals under the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and School Breakfast Program (SBP) are required to maintain proper sanitation and health standards in conformance with all applicable State and local laws and regulations.  School Food Authorities are required to obtain two school food safety inspections per school year, which are to be conducted by a State or local governmental agency responsible for food safety inspections (see 7 CFR 210.13 for the NSLP regulations and 7 CFR 220.7 for the SBP regulations at The Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act of 2004 (Public Law 108-265) increased the inspection requirement from one to two per school year, beginning in school year 2005-06 and requires School Food Authorities to post the latest inspection report in a visible location and make it available to the public upon request.
Food Safety Inspections Reporting Requirement
The State Agency that administers the school meal programs is also required to collect information on the total number of inspections conducted in schools under the jurisdiction and report to USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service the number of inspections by November 15 each year.
The food safety inspection requirement applies to all food preparation-service sites and service-only sites. The scope of the food safety inspection may vary according to the type of food service operation and is determined by the agency responsible for inspections.
2016-17 School Year Food Safety Inspections Report Results for Montana Schools
The following information was reported for the 2016-17 school year:
• 42 report three or more inspections
• 288 report two inspections
• 228 report one inspection
• 242 report no inspection or did not submit a report
 Schools continue to have trouble obtaining two inspections. The most common reason reported by schools that did not receive at least two inspections was related to the availability of the State or local government agency staff responsible for food safety inspections. While it remains a requirement and a priority for the schools, the agencies responsible may not have the staff resources to provide the required inspections, and they may feel that, due to their excellent practices and implementation of minimum Federal food safety requirements, schools pose less public health risk than other sites they must inspect. 
Schools which are not able to obtain the required inspections through no fault of their own should continue to follow proper food safety practices and have a HACCP-based food safety plan to protect the safety of school meals. Technical assistance materials and other resources are available at: .
The State Agency will continue to inform State and local public health inspectors of the inspection requirement and assert the need for their assistance in ensuring that schools make progress in meeting the inspection requirement.  In the meantime, the State Agency will continue to assist the schools in maintaining safe food service environments through food safety technical assistance, on-site program reviews, and other means.

Summer Food Service Program Policy

2018 Turnip the Beet Award
Summer Sponsors,
We are pleased to share that the 2018 Turnip the Beet Award materials are now available at
The Turnip the Beet Award, by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), recognizes outstanding Summer Meal Program sponsors who work hard to offer high quality meals that are appetizing, appealing, and nutritious.
Sponsors may submit a self-nomination or be nominated by another party.  The deadline to send in nomination materials to MT School Nutrition Programs is October 16, 2018.  Return your nominations to Emily Dunklee, SFSP Manager, at
Please find the following resources to guide your application efforts:
Nomination Form [doc]
Turnip the Beet One-pager

What are the prizes?
Three award levels are available: bronze, silver, and gold.
1. All winners receive a certificate and are featured in FNS’s Summer Newsletter.
2. Silver and gold winners will be featured on USDA’s blog. 
3. Gold winners will be identified as Turnip the Beet winners on FNS’s Capacity Builder map.

SFSP Newsletters
Every month, USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service creates newsletters highlighting new resources available to assist with coordination and operation of the Summer Food Service Program.

Montana No Kid Hungry School Breakfast Grants
Grants up to $5,000 are available to revamp your school breakfast program! Grants are being offered by Montana No Kid Hungry to support schools in implementing a new breakfast program or transitioning to an alternative breakfast model like Breakfast in the Classroom or Grab and Go. Over $350,000 in grant funds have already been awarded to 94 schools across Montana for Breakfast After the Bell programming. As a result, Montana teachers are seeing increased student engagement and more positive classroom environments, while many food service directors are bringing in more revenue due to higher federal reimbursements and increased student participation in school meals. Grant applications will be accepted from October 1st – November 5th.
Visit or email Linda Cleatus at to apply today!

FY 2019 USDA Farm to School Grant Request for Applications (RFA)
Grants are designed to expand farm to school programs that improve access to local foods in eligible schools.
• Application deadline: December 4, 2018
• Awards are up to $100,000 for Implementation Grants and $50,000 for Planning & Training Grants
• Tune in to the webinars on writing/submitting a successful application October 16 & 17 (see link above for details)

Whole Kids Foundation Gardens Grant Program
Created in partnership with FoodCorps, the Garden Grant program provides a $2,000 monetary grant to support a new or existing edible garden.

Press and Events
October is National Farm to School Month!
Join us and thousands of schools, early care and education sites, farms, communities and organizations across the country as we celebrate food education, school gardens and lunch trays filled with healthy, local ingredients. Everyone can celebrate!

National School Lunch Week October 15-19
National School Lunch Week 2018 is just a few weeks away—October 15-19! Check out the resources on the Marketing & PR page of the NSLW website and our media outreach section of the toolkit for ideas on how you can raise awareness of all the love that goes into your program. Don’t settle for simply trying to reach students—go beyond the brick walls to engage their parents and other stakeholders in the community! SNA has compiled some terrific tips to get you started.

One way to show parents the benefits of healthy school lunches is by providing them with our infographic. This one-page flyer contains key facts about the National School Lunch Program and the healthy components required for every school lunch in a colorful, fun and easy-to-read format. You can also share images of the infographic on social media. 

Another great way to spread the word is through the local media. Check out SNA’s members-only media resources and contact your local television news affiliate, radio station or newspaper to let them know why NSLW is important. (If your school or district has a communications office, be sure to touch base with them first.) Use our customizable media release to outline to reporters why NSLW is a newsworthy event, and start sending it out to reporters and bloggers 1-2 weeks prior to #NSLW18.
Get your elected officials involved in the #NSLW18 and spread the fun city-wide through an official proclamation. Use SNA’s customizable proclamation to submit a request to the office of your mayor or city council, asking that they declare October 15-19 National School Lunch Week in your community. Follow up with an invite to all elected officials—local, state and national—to visit your cafeteria and enjoy lunch with the kids. Make sure to reach out now, well ahead of NSLW!

Training and Resources

School Wellness Workshops in Butte, Kalispell, & Miles City
Are you interested in learning how a school wellness policy can fuel students to learn and behave better? Or how to support your staff in creating a healthy school environment? Join us to be inspired by school wellness in action!
In Fall of 2017, these workshops were done for Billings, Great Falls, and Missoula, now they will occur in Butte, Kalispell, and Miles City!
These free workshops will review the benefits of a strong wellness policy, USDA requirements for the school wellness policy, showcase best practices, assessment surveys, and outreach tools. Three hours of OPI Credit/USDA Professional Standards will be available for participants. We recommend bringing a team (2-3 people) from your school community such as administrators, school wellness coordinators, wellness champions, food service directors, educators, health professionals, parents, or community members.
Space is limited, so register now! Click to register
November 1st, Miles City:  Miles Community College, 2715 Dickinson, Room 106
November 7th, Kalispell: Red Lion Hotel, 20 North Main Street, # 150, Lake McDonald Room
November 29th, Butte: La Quinta Inn and Suites, 1 Holiday Park Drive, Rocky Mountain Room
Each workshop is from 1:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

If you would like to host a school wellness workshop for your area, we are happy to provide the training.
Contact Katie Bark, Montana Team Nutrition at  or (406) 994-5641. The USDA is an equal opportunity employer.