Tuesday Morning - July 28, 2020

An Update on Federal and State Policy Issues
from SNA

Table of Contents

COVID-19 Policy Updates

U.S. Representative Brindisi Letter to USDA Urging the Extension of SFSP and SSO Waivers
USDA Responds to SNA’s July 10 Waivers Letter
The Child Nutrition Relief Act of 2020
SNA Joins Allied Groups on Letter to FNS Requesting Waiver Extensions

Federal Policy

USDA Expands Access to Online Food Purchase Program
U.S. House Passes FY 21 Agriculture Funding Bill
Federal Register: USDA Publishes New Reimbursement Rates
CDC Issues New Guidance on School Reopening

State Snapshots

Second Quarter State Legislative Summary Now Available
Minnesota Introduces Bill on School Food Service Fund

Mark Your Calendars

Upcoming SNA Webinars
Upcoming FRAC Webinar
Upcoming Team Nutrition Webinar

Mystery Chat Corner

COVID-19 Policy Updates

U.S. Representative Brindisi Letter to USDA Urging the Extension of SFSP and SSO Waivers

U.S. Representative Anthony Brindisi (NY-22) sent a letter to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Sonny Perdue urging USDA to consider SNA’s previous proposals to allow schools to serve meals to all students at no charge through the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) and Seamless Summer Option (SSO). In addition, this letter calls for the extension SFSP/SSO waivers for the 2020-21 school year. Representative Brindisi’s letter included the entirety of SNA’s letter sent to USDA on July 10, that illustrates these requests. Read the full letter.

Back-Arrow-Blue Back to the top

USDA Responds to SNA’s July 10 Waivers Letter

On July 20, 2020, USDA responded to SNA’s July 10 letter which raised serious concerns about serving students during the pandemic. SNA asked USDA to immediately extend all Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) and Seamless Summer Option (SSO) COVID-19 waivers, including Area Eligibility, through the end of SY2020-21. USDA’s letter states, “The issues you identified in your letter are the ones we are working to understand and find a path forward in the best interest of students and schools."

Back-Arrow-Blue Back to the top

The Child Nutrition Relief Act of 2020

On July 23, 2020, Congresswoman Nydia M. Velázquez (NY-07) introduced H.R.7764, the Child Nutrition Relief Act of 2020. The legislation would allow USDA to extend all COVID-19 emergency school feeding waivers through June 30, 2021.

Back-Arrow-Blue Back to the top

SNA Joins Allied Groups on Letter to FNS Requesting Waiver Extensions

SNA, along with 65 other organizations, signed onto an allied letter by the Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) to USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) requesting the extension of vital school nutrition waivers. This letter illustrates that the extension of the non-congregate, meal service time, meal pattern flexibility and parent pick-up waivers will be critical to supporting stakeholders as they plan for providing meals through the federal nutrition programs when school starts in the fall. Read the full letter.

Back-Arrow-Blue Back to the top


Sam Shumate, Legislative Aide for Congressmen Ted Budd (NC-13), visited with staff at North Davidson Middle School to witness how their Summer Feeding Program operates. So far, the Davidson Country School Nutrition Department has served over 950,000 meals to students since schools have closed. .

Federal Policy

USDA Expands Access to Online Food Purchase Program

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced approval of requests from Arkansas, Hawaii and North Dakota to provide online purchasing of food to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) households. This approval will allow these states to expedite the implementation of online purchasing with currently authorized SNAP online retailers with a target start date to be announced at a later time. For a complete list of states where SNAP online purchasing is operational, visit this link.

Back-Arrow-Blue Back to the top

U.S. House Passes FY 21 Agriculture Funding Bill

On July 24, 2020, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a minibus for the fiscal year 2021 appropriations bills. This minibus combines four bills that include funding for the Agriculture Department, Food and Drug Administration, Interior Department and Environmental Protection Agency, among other departments and agencies. The bill provides $25.131 billion in mandatory funding for child nutrition programs, an increase of $1.516 billion from the Fiscal year 2020 enacted level. This funding will provide free or reduced-price school lunches and snacks for children who qualify for the program. The bill also provides $552 million for the Summer Food Service Program to ensure low-income children continue to receive nutritious meals while school is not in session. It also provides $50 million for the Summer EBT program, $35 million in school kitchen equipment grants, and $15 million in grants for the expansion of school breakfast. The final report includes language that urges the Secretary of Agriculture to extend critical nationwide waivers to ensure it is as easy as possible to feed students through the 2020-2021 school year. The Senate has not acted on appropriations bills yet, and it is unclear whether the House and Senate will finish the appropriations process or pass a continuing resolution to fund the government until after the election or next year.

Back-Arrow-Blue Back to the top

Federal Register: USDA Publishes New Reimbursement Rates

On July 22, 2020, USDA announced the annual adjustments to School Year (SY) 2020-21 reimbursement rates for the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), Special Milk, School Breakfast Program (SBP), and the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP). USDA also announced the average value of donated foods. The per meal rate for NSLP and CACFP in SY 2021 is .2450 cents, which is an increase of three quarters of a cent per meal from SY 2020.

Back-Arrow-Blue Back to the top

CDC Issues New Guidance on School Reopening

On July 23, 2020, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued updated guidance to help school administrators and parents take steps to protect the health of students and staff as schools reopen this fall. The CDC release included a Statement on the Importance of Reopening America's Schools this Fall, which cites access to school meals as one of several essential considerations in the decision to reopen schools. CDC's FAQ for School Administrators on Reopening Schools includes a short section with guidance on how schools should serve meals to students and staff.

Back-Arrow-Blue Back to the top

State Snapshots

Second Quarter State Legislative Summary Now Available

SNA’s second-quarter state legislative summary for 2020 is now available on SNA’s website. In the first seven months of 2020, legislatures in 39 states have introduced 153 bills that impact school nutrition programs or policy. Each legislative summary identifies key trends in school meal policy and details regarding new or recently passed legislation.

Back-Arrow-Blue Back to the top

Minnesota Introduces Bill on School Food Service Fund

HF 96 requires all revenues and expenditures for food service activities to be recorded in the school food service fund, including costs associated with processing applications, accounting for meals, preparing and serving food, providing custodial kitchen services, and other expenses involving the preparation of meals.

Back-Arrow-Blue Back to the top

Mark Your Calendars

Upcoming SNA Webinars

Register for this week’s Back to School Webinar and learn about the brand-new Dining Guide for School Meals in the Classroom. Plus, register for additional webinar opportunities in the fall! If you missed a particular webinar, catch up with SNA’s on-demand webinars.

Dining Guide for School Meals in the Classroom
Thursday, July 30, 2020, 3:00 PM ET
Will your cafeteria teams be expected to serve all or some meals in the classroom when the new school year begins? Join us for a webinar to learn about the brand-new Dining Guide for School Meals in the Classroom, a series of easy-to-customize templates you can adapt and share with various stakeholder groups at each school site. This crowd-sourced project led by Dayle Hayes, Jessica Shelly, and an expert group of school nutrition operators from around the country will help you connect with a wide variety of new partners, from administrators and teachers to custodians and support staff.

Back-Arrow-Blue Back to the top

Upcoming FRAC Webinar

Back-to-school planning looks a lot different this year, given the impact of COVID-19. Join the Food Research & Action Center (FRAC) on Thursday, July 30, 2020, 3:00 pm ET, for the webinar, “ Maximizing Opportunities to Ensure Students Nutrition Needs.” Learn how you can continue to strengthen and expand your school nutrition programs, especially school breakfast and afterschool meals, in this new environment. Efforts to increase participation pay off throughout the school year, with endless benefits for students as well as your bottom line. Speakers will share effective strategies to expand, adjust and promote your offerings to ensure the nutritional needs of students are met this coming school year.

Back-Arrow-Blue Back to the top

Upcoming Team Nutrition Webinar

Join Team Nutrition on Wednesday, August 12, 2020, 2:00 pm ET, for the webinar, “ Track Training Like a Star with the Professional Standards Training Tracker Tool.” Learn more about the new and existing features of the Professional Standards Training Tracker Tool (PSTTT). The PSTTT is a tool designed to assist school nutrition professionals in keeping track of their annually required training hour. This webinar will help listeners gain knowledge and a firsthand view of the benefits of using the PSTTT via live demonstrations.

Back-Arrow-Blue Back to the top

Mystery Chat Corner

On July 28, 2017, the U.S. Senate voted for a "skinny" repeal of Obamacare that failed 51-49. Which Senator cast the deciding vote against the repeal?
A: John McCain

Back-Arrow-Blue Back to the top

Contact Us

2900 S. Quincy Street, Suite 700
Arlington, VA 22206
servicecenter@schoolnutrition.org  

Tel (703) 824-3000
Fax (703) 824-3015

> For The Media

Sign Up for Our Newsletters

Read the latest news and developments facing the school nutrition industry, as well as stay on top of important trends and resources.

 

> Read the Latest Newsletters

SNA State Associations

The School Nutrition Association has a presence in every state across the country. View links to many of the state associations to find out more about what SNA is doing nationwide. 

> Learn More