Big Changes Coming For Child Nutrition Programs
The U.S. house has passed the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, meaning more federal funding will go towards making sure children eat well at schools.
The bill is expected to be signed into law by President Obama and as our Annette Garcia reports, it’s a bill local school district officials are excited about.
Its being called monumental legislation.
The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 has been passed by the U.S. House and is expected to improve children’s health and reduce childhood obesity nationwide.
All by updating school nutrition standards, for example, making sure students eat more fresh, not canned, foods.
The bill is the only major improvement to child nutrition programs ... in decades.
“What they eat is so important. What this means is they'll be eating healthier food.”
“This is really the biggest change we've had for school lunches in the last 30 years.”
Local school districts already meet very high standards for what they serve at local schools, infusing more fruits and vegetables in the menu.
So its’ another aspect of the bill they're more excited about.
The federal government will give six additional cents per meal ... to up district food budgets.
Those six pennies don’t seem like much but over time will add up 4.5 billion dollars over the next ten years.
“The six cents they’re going to give us per meal will allow us to buy better quality higher grain foods cause they’re a little bit more expensive.”
UISD currently has about 500 students on special diets, about half are diabetic or at risk of becoming diabetic.
And childhood obesity nationwide has more than tripled in the past 30 years.
All staggering statistics district officials hope will change with the nutrition act of 2010.
“This will create national standards for food that’s available in the whole school environment and strengthen the local wellness policies.”
The bill also includes increasing the number of kids eligible for free meals at public schools.
Because of higher nutrition standards mandated by the state of Texas, local school already serve more fruits, vegetables and even wheat bread.
Local district officials say that step alone has already worked at reducing the obesity rate by one percent each year.