WELLNESS & NUTRITION POLICY
The Board of Education of the Essex County Vocational Technical Schools recognizes that child and adolescent obesity has reached epidemic levels in the United States and that poor diet combined with the lack of physical activity negatively impacts on students' health, and their ability and motivation to learn.
The Board is Committed To:
- Providing students with healthy and nutritious foods;
- Encouraging the consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables, low fat milk and whole grains;
- Supporting healthy eating through nutrition education;
- Encouraging students to select and consume all components of the school meal; and
- Providing students with the opportunity to engage in daily physical activity.
All reimbursable meals shall meet Federal nutrient standards as required by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Child Nutrition Program regulations. All items served as part of the After School Snack Program shall meet the standards as outlined within this policy.
The following items may not be served, sold or given out as free promotion anywhere on school property at anytime before the end of the school day:
The Board is Committed To:
- Foods of minimal nutritional value (FMNV) as defined by U.S. Department of Agriculture regulations;
- All food and beverage items listing sugar, in any form, as the first ingredient; and
- All forms of candy
Schools shall reduce the purchase of any products containing trans fats. (Federal labeling of trans fats on all food products is required by January 1, 2006.)
All snack and beverage items sold or served anywhere on school property during the school day, including items sold in a la carte lines, vending machines, snack bars, school stores and fundraisers or served in the reimbursable After School Snack Program, shall meet the following standards:
- Based on manufacturers' nutritional data or nutrient facts labels:
- No more than eight grams of total fat per serving, with the exception of nuts and seeds.
- No more than two grams of saturated fat per serving.
- All beverages shall not exceed 12 ounces, with the following exceptions:
- Milk containing two percent or less fat.
- Whole milk shall not exceed eight ounces. In high schools:
- At least 60 percent of all beverages offered, other than milk and water, shall be 100 percent fruit or vegetable juices.
- No more than 40 percent of all ice cream/frozen desserts shall be allowed to exceed the above standards for sugar, fat, and saturated fat.
Food and beverages served during special school celebrations or during curriculum related activities shall be exempt from this policy, with the exception of foods of minimal nutritional value as defined by USDA regulations. This policy does not apply to: medically authorized special needs diets pursuant to 7 CFR Part 210; school nurses using FMNVs during the course of providing health care to individual students; or special needs students whose Individualized Education Plan (IEP) indicates their use for behavior modification. Adequate time shall be allowed for student meal service and consumption. Schools shall provide a pleasant dining environment. The Board recommends that physical education or recess be scheduled before lunch whenever possible. This school district's curriculum shall incorporate nutrition education and physical activity consistent with the New Jersey Department of Education Core Curriculum Standards. The Board of Education is committed to promoting the Nutrition Policy with all food service personnel, teachers, nurses, coaches and other school administrative staff so they have the skills they need to implement this policy and promote healthy eating practices. The Board will work toward expanding awareness about this policy among students, parents, teachers and the community at large.