Child Nutrition Update - August 2020
Virtual Back To School Workshops
It was great to ‘see’ all of you at our Back to School Virtual trainings at the end of July. In case you missed any of the trainings or the resources provided, please click the link to access each. A Certificate of Completion is also available that participants can use to calculate the number of professional development hours they earned.

This training takes the participant through the maze of civil rights that cannot be trampled on when operating a federally funded school meal program. From the free and reduced applications through the service of a meal, the USDA Nondiscrimination statement must be present. Civil rights complaint procedures must be implemented and logs kept. Training on conflict resolution and customer service must be provided.
All staff and volunteers that interact in any way with the school meal programs must receive and document civil rights training annually.
“We are not in Kansas anymore, Toto” said Dorothy. This is North Dakota but it could be any state in the union and the same would be happening in school kitchens – making plans to serve kids in the cafeteria, in the classroom or curbside. Director Schloer gave the best guidance based on USDA waivers on developing plans to reopen school cafeterias this school year. The ND Restart Guidance for Child Nutrition Programs has a checklist of questions to make sure each kitchen has answered in order to provide flexible service throughout the school year.
Find all the resources for managing the free and reduced meals, financials of the food service account. The 2020-2021 school year Reimbursement Rates for Breakfast, Lunch and Snack were also released in this session.
Administrative Review Prep- Sorry – we are re-recording this session.
Are you on the list for a review of the National School Lunch program this year? Find out here and learn how the review will be conducted, what information needs to be gathered at the school kitchen, in the business office and around the district to complete the review.
Deb Egeland put her unique touch on this session of ideas to possibly serve in the classroom or sending meals home. A “Menu ideas for Grab and Go” fact sheet based on the NSLP meal pattern was also put together after this session (see below for the document).
The application has been approved by our Mountain Plains Regional USDA office! If you are interested, please access the application below. Due date is: September 30, 2020.  Other funding may be available sooner than the USDA equipment grant. Watch this session to find out about these opportunities. 
Yes, you CAN operate the school food service as it was done last year, but SHOULD you? The questions and answers from these two sessions were put together in one document.  
Even those doing the job for 20 years are required to document training hours each year. This session highlighted trainings that are coming up as well as the fresh fruit and vegetable program and menus to deal with special diets in these challenging times. 
USDA 101 terms and how-to’s. Updates on DOD Fresh fruit and vegetables, monthly surveys and other pertinent information about the food you receive ‘free’ from USDA for use in school meals.
The ‘Bowl’ was a hit feature of the processor event. Bowls can be put together ahead of time or on the line, by staff or students and be equally successful served in the cafeteria, classroom or curbside. See this demonstration along with menu ideas from most of the ND DPICNFD processors on this training.
Production Record Books

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ND School Kitchen Planning Guide
Grab and Go Ideas for School Lunch
August is...
National Sandwich month – Celebrate at both breakfast and lunch, feature meat/meat alternate between any 2 kinds of bread; ask the kids about their favorite ‘weird’ choice – bologna and jam, Yum!
Aug 8th: National ‘Leave a Zucchini on a Neighbor’s Porch’ Day – may seem harmless, but one neighbor could end up with a dozen foot-long vegetables, then what? Since this vegetable is good raw, grilled, fried, steamed, BBQ’d, sautéed, baked or roasted, there should be a recipe to please anyone. Try mixing in grated zucchini to the morning muffin mix or sautéing it for a deceptively delicious sloppy joe.
Aug 16th: National Bratwurst day. There are Bratwurst’s that do have a Child Nutrition label (CN). Please make sure to ask your salesperson for the ‘school’ bratwurst with the CN label if you celebrate this day.
Aug 31st: National Eat Outside day – (The celebration could also be called “Keep the cafeteria clean! Day”) Who doesn’t like a picnic? Menu hot dogs on a bun with carrots and coleslaw along with big, juicy watermelon slices. Pair with a carton of milk to make the NSLP meal pattern.
August INFORMation
Important Dates for School Nutrition Programs: Dates have been updated along with reminders for each of the important activities to be completed for the School Nutrition Programs. Remember that you agreed to do these things when you signed up for each of the programs!
School Nutrition Program Renewal process: Reminder to submit your renewal in NDFoods. Please re-read your policy statement and program agreements to remind you of the activities that must be done to fulfill the agreement and receive federal funding for the program.
Administrative Reviews, 2020-2021 school year: We are hoping that Administrative reviews can begin as normal this year and we would like to complete the reviews as soon as possible. Here is a link to our scheduled review schools. If you are on this list, please be thinking of a good time for us to do the review. It would also be helpful you staff, including the food service director, the business manager and whoever is handling the free and reduced application process to watch the Back to School training “Administrative Review Prep”.
September 17th – ND Ag in the Classroom School Lunch Day (previously Pride of Dakota)
October 5-9th – Apple Crunch Challenge (Oct 7th is official Crunch-Off day) Use anything that crunches this year!
October 12-16th – National School Lunch Week (Theme: Now Playing: School Lunch) Celebrate the successes of your school lunch program.
Fresh Fruits and Vegetables: Give Okra a try
North Dakotan's have not developed the same tradition of eating okra as those in the southern United States but adding okra to the diet can have health benefits as it is high in fiber, magnesium, Vitamins A, C, K and B6, antioxidants, lectin and folate. It is a unique fruit though in that it provides some protein, a nutrient that many other fruits and vegetables lack.

Okra is a stunning plant, growing tall on a sturdy stem with very large leaves. The flowers are also large and beautiful, resembling a single hollyhock. It is the fruit that the harvester is after though. The long, slender pods grow from the crook of the leaf and stem. Look for smooth and tender green pods without brown spots or dried ends when purchasing. They do stay fairly fresh in the coldest part of the refrigerator for at least a week.

One reason Okra may not be accepted by students is the ‘mucilage’ the okra produces when cooked. This gives it a slimy texture. BUT okra is delish when eaten raw or pickled. Several North Dakota schools do have the pickled variety on their salad bar.

For the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable program, try the raw presentation both as a whole pod and sliced. The wagon-wheel appearance of sliced okra may entice some kids to try it.
Non Discrimination Statement
In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA.
Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits. Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.
To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027) found online at:, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by:
(1) Mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20250-9410;
(2) Fax: (202) 690-7442; or

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.