Serving Meals Safely

School Meal Operations
Food and Nutrition Services will be offering freshly cooked complete meals to students to ensure they are well nourished and ready to get the most from CPS educators. Below is some basic information to ensure families know what to expect with dining in school.

Meal operations in most schools will return to normal, but may vary based on school infrastructure. Following the guidance provided by the CPS Health and Safety Team, school administrators and the Food & Nutrition team have worked together on how to best serve students at each individual school. Below is general information on how meal operations are taking place in schools.

WHO

Who will be preparing the meals?
Food & Nutrition Staff within the school kitchens will prepare breakfast and lunch for students.

Who will be tracking meal distribution to students?
Students going through the serving line will enter their number on the pin pad by the cashier station. If students are eating in the classroom, meals will be preordered and tracked using a scanner system.

WHAT
What type of food will be offered?
There will be multiple meal options each day that meet USDA regulations, including hot entrées such as pasta or cold options such as sandwiches and a daily salad bar.

At most schools, meals will be served on trays as students select their complete meal in the serving line. Meals served in the classroom will be pre-packaged in to-go style containers.

What about breakfast?
Breakfast service will vary by school, and will either be served in the classroom or through the serving line in the cafeteria before school. A number of schools may have grab-and-go breakfasts available in the school office for late students.

When scholars are able to have breakfast in the classroom we have seen higher participation rates than when breakfast is served in the cafeteria. Breakfast service has been decided by school administrators in conjunction with Food & Nutrition staff.

WHERE
Where will students eat?
School cafeterias will be utilized for dining. School classrooms and outdoor spaces (weather permitting) may also be used for dining depending on the school’s infrastructure.

WHEN
When will meals be offered?
The meal schedule will be at the Principal’s discretion in collaboration with Food and Nutrition staff. Please reach out to your student’s school for more details on their specific breakfast and lunch schedule.

HOW
How much will school meals cost?
Students may select a complete* breakfast and lunch at no cost for the entire school year. Cafeteria staff will help students to select complete meals. Students will be charged for anything that does not meet the requirements of a complete meal.

*A meal is considered a complete meal when at least three (3) meal components identified by the USDA (Grains, Fruits, Vegetables, Meat/Meat Alternative, and Milk) have been selected and at least one of them is a fruit or vegetable.

How will meals be served?
Most schools will be serving students through the serving line. Students will select a complete meal as they come through the serving line. A small number of schools will continue to serve students pre-packed complete meals in the classroom.

How do we get meals that accommodate our child’s allergies?
Please see our Medical Dietary Restrictions page to make appropriate accommodations for your student.

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