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NewMAPP Certification and Validation Update

New MeAl Pattern Priorities (NewMAPP) e-mail message with update on the certification and validation process.

Subject: New MeAl Pattern Priorities (NewMAPP)

Dear Food Service Directors:

As we move into a new phase of efforts around the New Meal Pattern (NMP) requirements, we’ve added some new sections to NewMAPP e-mails. In addition to new resources and references, training opportunities, and sharing of best practices, you will now find information to keep you up to date on the certification and validation process and tips for building a successful certification package.


To Certify or Not to Certify…? Several School Food Authorities (SFAs) have asked the question “Beyond not getting the additional six cents performance-based lunch reimbursement, what will happen if I don’t certify?” According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), certification is a required, one-time process. SFAs that do not apply for certification during School Year (SY) 2012–13 will be scheduled for a full Administrative Review (AR)—formerly known as a Coordinated Review Effort (CRE)—early in SY 2013–14, which will include the certification process. SFAs certifying through the 2013–14 AR will need to ensure that both breakfast and lunch menus meet the new requirements.

Validation Reviews—Announced or Unannounced? The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 requires that state agencies (SAs) conduct validation reviews of 25 percent of SFAs certified to receive the additional reimbursement, as well as all SFAs with an enrollment of 40,000 or greater. The USDA has given SAs the discretion to decide on announced or unannounced reviews. The NSD has decided that all validation reviews will be announced, for both the SFA and the selected sites, with two weeks advance notice. The NSD will release a detailed Management Bulletin (MB) on the validation review process in early November.

Certification Successes—Congratulations to California’s first two SFAs certified to receive the additional six cents per lunch reimbursement: Ocean View School District (Ralph Peschek) in Orange County and Palm Springs Unified School District (Wanda Grant) in Riverside County!


How to Use the USDA Menu Certification Worksheet. Here are a few tips to help complete the worksheet and ease frustration:

  • Immediately “Save As” to your computer and use the nomenclature specified in the August 22, 2012 MB, Menu Certification for Performance‑Based Reimbursement, available on the CDE School Nutrition Programs Web page at
  • Lost data? Make sure to scroll all the way up and all the way to the left of the worksheet to relocate information you have entered.
  • Attend a Certification of Compliance training for hands-on experience with the worksheet. Visit CNIPS at and click on “Training Registration” to view a list of available trainings.
  • Need technical assistance? Contact NSD staff specialists in the new meal pattern and certification of compliance by e-mail at or by phone at 916-322-2003.


6 Cents Certification Worksheet Demonstration Series—The USDA developed the 6 Cents Certification Worksheet Demonstration Series providing step-by-step instructions for completing the various pages within the Lunch Menu Worksheets. Links to the series are located on the USDA FNS Certification of Compliance Web page at and viewing them requires access to YouTube. For SFAs not able to view YouTube videos, the USDA has provided the series in .wmv format at the links below.


Arvin Union School District Superintendent Supports NMP—Michelle McLean, Superintendent of Arvin Union School District in Kern County, strongly supports the NMP requirements, and clearly expressed her enthusiasm in a recent opinion piece. Read Superintendent McLean’s comments on the Bakersfield Californian Web site opinion page at [Note: the preceding Web address is no longer valid].

Farmer’s Market Salad Bars Get Parent/Teacher Praise—It’s certainly wonderful receiving national acclaim for his Farmer’s Market Salad Bars in the Riverside Unified School District. For Rodney Taylor, Director of Nutrition Services, receiving letters like this one is even better:

Hi Mr. Taylor,

I am a parent of two students here at Washington, as well as a teacher. I just wanted to let you know how impressed I am with the salad bar lunch offered in our cafeteria. It has really helped reinforce what I have been teaching them at home about making healthy choices and the food groups. Over the summer, my children chose a side salad or the salad bar option even when we went out to eat and I was very impressed. I give our school cafeteria salad bar the credit for this!

Thank you for bringing the salad bar option to our district. I enjoy having a healthy option, even as a member of the staff.

Thanks again,

April Smith
Washington Elementary


For more information or if you have questions, please contact Grace Huppert, Nutrition Education Consultant, by e-mail at or by phone at 916-322-1563. For specific questions on the NMP requirements or the menu certification process, please contact the NSD’s Menu Certification Team by e-mail at or by phone at 916-322-2003.

Questions:   Menu Certification Team | | 916-322-2003
Last Reviewed: Monday, April 10, 2017
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