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Contact: Diane Pratt-Heavner

301-686-3124

media@schoolnutrition.org

School Nutrition Professionals to Call on Congress to Increase School Meal Funding

2016-02-26

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Next week, about 900 school nutrition professionals from across the country head to Capitol Hill to urge Congress to invest in healthy school meals, which benefit 30 million students every school day.

The effort is part of School Nutrition Association’s (SNA) 44th annual Legislative Action Conference (LAC), February 28 – March 1. In addition to hearing from key Congressional Committee staff regarding the status of Child Nutrition Reauthorization, attendees will “Charge to the Hill” to bring concerns from their school cafeterias to Congress.

LAC attendees will meet with House and Senate members to discuss SNA’s 2016 Position Paper, which urges Congress to increase federal funding for school meal programs. Attendees will relay the importance of quickly passing a Child Nutrition Reauthorization bill, including an agreement on nutrition standards for school meals.

USDA estimated current nutrition standards will cost school districts more than $3 billion in additional food and labor costs by the end of Fiscal Year 2016. As a result, nearly eight in ten school districts have taken steps to offset financial losses in their meal programs, according to a recent SNA survey. School meal programs have reduced staff, cut into reserve funds, deferred equipment investments and limited menu choices. Click here for SNA’s infographic highlighting these challenges.

“Historically under-funded school meal programs are struggling to manage rising costs and expenses associated with healthy menu changes,” said SNA President Jean Ronnei, SNS. “Congress needs to provide adequate funding to ensure school meal programs can sustain this progress for the millions of students depending on school meals as a primary source of nutrition each school day.”

SNA continues to support school nutrition professionals working to meet regulatory requirements and improve their programs. LAC attendees will also participate in breakout and general sessions designed to share best practices.

For more information, or to attend LAC, please contact Diane Pratt-Heavner at (301) 686-3124 or media@schoolnutrition.org. Be sure to follow the discussion at #LAC16.


About School Nutrition Association:
The School Nutrition Association (SNA) is a national, non-profit professional organization representing 56,000 school nutrition professionals across the country. Founded in 1946, SNA and its members are dedicated to making healthy school meals and nutrition education available to all students. For more information on school meals, visit www.SchoolNutrition.org/SchoolMeals.

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