Step behind the serving line to catch a glimpse of modern-day school meals, and learn about the people who help ensure that America’s students are well-fed and poised for academic success.

From nutrition requirements and statistics to school nutrition success stories and national campaigns, this is everything you need to know about our nation’s school meal programs.


Key Facts

School Nutrition Standards

To receive federal reimbursements, school meals are required to meet strict nutrition standards, offering a balance of lean protein, whole grains, fruits, vegetables and low- or fat-free milk.

School Meal Statistics

Nearly 30 million students eat school lunch every day. Get more statistics regarding the nation’s school meals programs.

The People Behind School Meals


School Nutrition Success Stories

Learn how school nutrition professionals and meal programs have made a difference in the lives of America’s students.


School Nutrition Professionals

From chefs to nutritionists and industry partners to state agencies, learn more about the people who collaborate to ensure school meal programs thrive.

Annual Observances

National School Lunch Week

School lunches are worth celebrating! Learn more about National School Lunch Week (NSLW), commemorated annually in October.

National School Breakfast Week

National School Breakfast Week (NSBW), celebrated annually in March, honors the importance of a nutritious morning meal in fueling students for success.

School Lunch Hero Day

Recognize the impact of school nutrition professionals on School Lunch Hero Day (SLHD), occurring annually on the first Friday of May.

Latest News

Annual National Conference, Conferences & Events, SNA News

#ANC24 Registration is Open!

April 3, 2024

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cover of the SN Plus article "Building Good Fences" over a background of a multicolored picket fence
SNA News, SNA Publications

SN Plus: Building Good Fences

March 28, 2024

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Communications & Marketing, SNA News

Bonus Podcast Episode: School Nutrition Leadership with Lori Adkins

March 27, 2024

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School Nutrition Magazine

First Word

Navigating My Own “Eras” Tour

March 8, 2024

A few months ago, I shared my decision to step down as Editor of School Nutrition, and this is, indeed, my final issue in that role. While I will no longer drive this publication, I will always support school nutrition professionals personally and professionally, too, and I hope you’ll continue to see my byline in these pages on occasion.

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What’s Cooking

Embrace Cultural Diversity Through Food

March 8, 2024

School nutrition is a natural area to promote cultural diversity. In a profession where food takes a front seat, inviting staff and families to share favorite foods is a great way to help them feel more comfortable embracing, expressing and sharing their cultural traditions.

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What’s Cooking

Ingredients for Health: Dragon Fruit

March 8, 2024

What’s pink, green, spiky and delicious? Dragon fruit! This unique fruit has skyrocketed in popularity; discover how to prepare it, nutrition information, recipes and more.

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