The nutrition component supports the integration of nutritious, affordable and appealing meals; nutrition education; and an environment that promotes healthful eating behaviors for all children. School nutrition services should be designed to maximize each child’s education and health potential for a lifetime. This is most effectively achieved when the cafeteria, classroom and community work as a team.
|The Nutrition Component promotes:
Goal: To improve the health, nutritional well-being and academic performance of North Carolina’s students through coordinated and comprehensive nutrition policies that enhance the school classroom, cafeteria and community environment and support lifelong healthful eating habits.
Eat Smart, Move More
Child Nutrition Programs
Child Nutrition Programs provide nutritious school meals to promote learning readiness and the opportunity to practice skills learned in classroom nutrition education. Programs in schools include the National School Lunch Program, the School Breakfast Program, the Special Milk Program, After School Snack Program and the Summer Food Service Program. Programs are available to all children regardless of ability to pay. Federal regulations also support the student with Special Dietary Needs. Meals are modified with a proper medical prescription without additional cost to the parent of guardian. For more information, call Child Nutrition Services with the NC Department of Public Instruction (919) 807-3506.
Approximately half of North Carolina’s schools are Team Nutrition schools. Team Nutrition provides schools with nutrition education materials for children and families, and technical assistance materials for Child Nutrition directors, cafeteria managers and staff. State agency partners provide training and technical assistance to support these programs in local schools. Team Nutrition supports the School Meals Initiative policy that school meals reflect the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. For more information, call Child Nutrition Services with the NC Department of Public Instruction (919) 807-3506.
Nutrition Education and Training Program (NET)
The North Carolina NET Program, through its local, state and federal partnerships, provides leadership in promoting healthful eating habits for the state’s children. NET integrates mealtime and learning experiences to help children make informed food choices as part of a healthy lifestyle. Activities of the NET Program include a Resource Lending Library, mini-grants, workshops and a newsletter. For more information, call the NET Program with the NC Department of Health and Human Services at (919) 715-8792.
North Carolina School Nutrition Action Committee (SNAC)
SNAC consists of representatives from the three state governmental agencies that participate in school nutrition services including the Department of Public Instruction, the Department of Health and Human Services and the NC Cooperative Extension Service. The goal of this collaborative committee is to coordinate school nutrition activities that link the cafeteria, classroom and community to school health. The committee has worked on issues ranging from meeting the dietary needs of children with special needs to coordinating health promotion programs that focus on 5 a Day , 1% or Less Milk campaign, breakfast promotion and increased physical activity. For more information, call the Children and Youth Branch with the NC Department of Health and Human Services at (919) 715-3292.
Soft-Drinksand School-age Children: Trends, Effects, Solutions
NC Statewide Health Promotion Program and NC Cardiovascular Health Program
These programs support local health departments that are working in the arena of promoting policy change and environmental improvements to increase physical activity and healthful eating opportunities in various settings, including schools. For more information on the NC Statewide Health Promotion Program, call (919)715-3344. For more information on the Start With Your Heart call (919) 715-5398.
North Carolina 5 a Day Coalition
This coalition of state and local agencies, public, private and nonprofit organizations is licensed to promote the National Cancer Institute’s 5 a Day Program. Schools are primary channels that the coalition is using to encourage North Carolina children to consume at least five servings of fruits and vegetables daily. For more information, call the Health Promotion Branch with the NC Department of Health and Human Services at (919) 715-3829.
NCSU Cooperative Extension Service
The NC Cooperative Extension Family & Consumer Sciences, Department of Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) exists in all 100 counties and on the Cherokee Indian Reservation. It includes one or more Family and Consumer Educators (FCE), who are part of the County Extension Center. FCEs interact with county residents to assess nutrition education needs and issues. As NCSU field faculty, they also work with FCS faculty to provide research-based educational programming. County and state faculty work with school-age children, parents and educators in a variety of ways including providing leadership on the community component of Team Nutrition, Be Active Kids and the SyberShop CD-ROM for high school students. Agents work in multi-agency teams to improve nutrition education opportunities for children and parents. For more information, call Family and Consumer Sciences with NCSU Cooperative Extension Service at (919) 515-9142.
School-based Health Centers
North Carolina has approximately 50 school-based health centers across the state. Center services target children aged 5-19 years and address important health challenges such as unmet medical and mental health concerns and the reduction of health-risk behaviors. Most centers have a nutritionist on staff providing nutrition and weight management services to students. Some coordinate school-wide nutrition promotion campaigns with cafeteria staff. For more information, call the Children and Youth Branch with the NC Department of Health and Human Services at (919) 715-3292.
CDC Guidelines for School Health Programs
National guidelines for school health programs were developed on the basis ofan exhaustive review of published research and input from academic experts andnational, federal, and voluntary organizations interested in child andadolescent health. The guidelines include specific recommendations to helpstates, districts, and schools implement health programs and policies that havebeen found to be most effective in promoting healthy behaviors among youth.Recommendations cover topics such as policy development, curriculum developmentand selection, instructional strategies, staff training, family and communityinvolvement, evaluation, and linkages between different components of thecoordinated school health program. School Health Program Guidelines arecurrently available on the following topics.
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