Category Archives: Nutrition Services

HISD to emphasize good food during National School Lunch Week

Nutrition Services will mark National School Lunch Week with cafeteria-decorating contests, Lucky Lunch Tray giveaways, and a behind-the-scenes cafeteria media tour to showcase the work that goes into making and serving good food.

With a theme of “Level Up with a Healthy Lunch,” National School Lunch Week provides the perfect opportunity to highlight the mission of Nutrition Services – providing students with access to good food that is simple, wholesome, colorful, and made with locally sourced ingredients.

The week is observed nationally from Oct. 15 to 19. Continue reading

Cooking competition champs serve winning meal to fellow Milby HS students

Three Milby High School culinary students were transformed into real world chefs on Thursday, as they led the campus kitchen staff in preparing an award-winning meal for fellow students.

Students Jordyn Moore, Roberto Blas, and Estevan Mata — collectively named the Broadway Buffs — were the second-place winners of the national Cooking Up Change competition, which they advanced to in June after winning top honors in the district’s competition earlier this year.
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Salad bars set to expand across district this school year

When most people think about students’ favorite lunches, they think of the standards – pizza, hamburgers, mac and cheese. But the introduction of salad bars at school cafeterias across the district is challenging the notion of what students enjoy eating.

Last year, the Houston Independent School District’s Nutrition Services department introduced salad bars as a standard option at more than 20 elementary schools. The pilot program was a first for elementary schools and proved so successful that salads made up more than half the meals served on the first day. Continue reading

HISD Nutrition Services to host annual Grandparents Day celebration

HISD Nutrition Services is set to host its annual Grandparents Day celebration on Thursday, Sept 13 to honor all grandparents districtwide.

Grandparents Day, recognized the Sunday after Labor Day, is a national holiday that recognizes the important role grandparents play in the lives of their grandchildren.

Students are encouraged to ask their grandparents to join them for a special lunch served by school cafeterias to commemorate the day. Continue reading

HISD dietitian earns School Nutrition Specialist credential

Elementary students may know her as the Lunch Lady – the lovable storybook character who serves up lunch with a side of justice. But Nan Cramer takes school lunches and good nutrition seriously.

Cramer, a registered dietitian with HISD’s Nutrition Services, recently earned certification as a school nutrition specialist. She received the credentials last month after taking a comprehensive credentialing exam administered by the School Nutrition Association, a national industry association that supports schools with professional development and other programs. Continue reading

HISD executive chef appreciates lessons learned from Harvey

As the start of the school year approached in August 2017, Nutrition Services Executive Chef David Husbands was energized and ready for a new year full of promise.

The department was prepared to take on the school year without the management of Aramark and it was armed with new recipes, a newly-installed nutrition officer and a bold vision for school meals in HISD.

Instead of welcoming students back on the first day of school, Husbands and his team stepped in as first-responders, providing hot meals to communities who had limited access to food.
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Looking back, moving forward: Business Operations after Harvey

For Houston Independent School District Chief Operating Officer Brian Busby, it’s hard to believe it’s been a year since Hurricane Harvey hit Houston, dumping an unprecedented 51 inches of water on city.

“I remember being excited about the start of school. We were ready to welcome our students and have a good year,” said Busby, who oversees HISD’s Business Operations division. “And just like that, it came to a screeching halt.”

The damage was considerable. With nearly all schools needing some repair and a few so damaged they would need to be rebuilt, the start of school was postponed by two weeks. Some schools were so damaged that they were delayed further or even relocated to temporary campuses.
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Business Operations employees start school year with in-service trainings

As students get ready for the upcoming school year, Business Operations employees are doing the same, dedicating time for professional development that will better prepare them for the year ahead.

Held across the district throughout August, the in-service sessions provide employees with critical training related to their respective roles as well as the latest state and federal guidelines. They also serve as a welcome back for employees who were off duty during the summer. Continue reading

HISD asking parents to complete socioeconomic form

The Houston Independent School District will provide free breakfast and lunch to students at no charge for the 2018-2019 school year, but parents will need to fill out a new form to ensure Title I funding for HISD schools.

All HISD schools are now qualified to operate under the USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service Community Eligibility Provision, which allows HISD to provide breakfast, lunch, and dinner at no charge to all students, eliminating the need for free and reduced-price meal applications.

While parents will not need to complete and return a free and reduced-price meal application, they will need to complete a socioeconomic form (see below), known as the blue form.

In order for campuses to receive their Title I funding, HISD is still required to collect and report the socioeconomic status of each students to the Texas Education Agency. Continue reading

HISD to provide meals to students at no charge for 2018-2019 school year

Parents of Houston Independent School District students soon will have one less expense, as Nutrition Services has announced that all students will eat meals at no charge during the 2018-2019 school year.

All HISD schools are now qualified to operate under the USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service Community Eligibility Provision, which allows HISD to provide breakfast, lunch, and dinner at no charge to all students, eliminating the need for free and reduced-price meal applications.

The program allows the nation’s highest poverty schools and districts to serve meals at no cost to all enrolled students without collecting household applications. Schools are eligible for the program if they have a certain percentage of students who qualify for free or reduced meals based on their participation in programs such as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families. Continue reading