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CNAC Meeting Minutes for June 9, 2014


Child Nutrition Advisory Council

An Advisory Body to the State Board Of Education

Meeting Minutes

June 9, 2014

Members Present

Nori Grossmann, Clell Hoffman, Carol Chase Huegli, Lawrence Herrera, Caroline Danielson,
Soo Zee Park, Barbara Rohrer, Lucy McProud, and Marni Posey

State Board of Education Member Liaison

Niki Sandoval

Representative for the State Board of Education

Beth Rice

Members Absent

Trish Vance and Colleen You

Also Present—California Department of Education

Michael Danzik, Kimberly Frinzell, Martie Hague, and Janice Hunt

Call to Order

Lawrence (Larry) Herrera, Chair, called the meeting to order at 10:12 a.m.

The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.

Members and other attendees introduced themselves.

Approval of Agenda

Carol Chase Huegli requested the following changes to the Child Nutrition Advisory Council (CNAC) agenda: switch Item 1 with Item 3. Lucy McProud then moved to approve the agenda for June 9, 2014, and Barbara Rohrer seconded the motion. The CNAC voted to approve the June 9, 2014, agenda.

Approval of Minutes to the February 10, 2014, CNAC Meeting

Nori Grossmann moved to approve the minutes and Barbara Rohrer seconded the motion. The CNAC voted to approve the minutes of the April 14, 2014, meeting

There was no public comment.

Agenda Items

Item 1

From the Nutrition Services Division (NSD), Martie Hague, Staff Services Analyst, provided updates about Meal Time Management.

Subject: Meal Time Management Updates

Ms. Hague reviewed both NSD updates and survey results for meal time management since the October 21, 2013, CNAC meeting. She presented the results of two similar surveys designed to identify factors related to how much time students have to eat during the lunch period. The anonymous responses were combined and not tied to a single respondent. The first survey was sent to 5,668 elementary school principals; 699 completed the survey, resulting in a 12.3 percent response rate. The second survey was sent to 3,131 middle and high school principals; 317 completed the survey, resulting in a 10.1 percent response rate. The survey results included the demographics of the schools, total amount of time for the lunch period, different policies/procedures, and optional response fields.

Ms. Hague reviewed the Time to Eat Survey Results handout. Some of the highlights of the results included:

  • 81.9 percent of elementary schools have at least 40 minutes for the lunch period (includes eating time and recess/play time at lunch) and 95.6 percent of middle/high schools have at least 30 minutes for the lunch period
  • 74 percent of elementary schools have at least 20 minutes or more for specifically eating
  • 75.8 percent of elementary schools have recess immediately after lunch
  • 14 percent of elementary schools estimated the last student in line has less than 10 minutes (from when lunch is served until the end of the eating period) to eat lunch and 6 percent of middle/high schools estimated the last student in line has less than 10 minutes to eat lunch
  • 92.4 percent of elementary schools and 41.7 percent of middle/high schools offer more than one lunch period; 25 percent of elementary schools offer five or more lunch periods 
  • 20 percent of the 317 middle/high schools that responded offer reimbursable meals through vending machines

  • Very few respondents mentioned Local School Wellness Policies (LSWP) in relation to a district or site level policy regarding the lunch period
  • 33.6 percent of elementary schools and 53.6 percent of middle/high schools allow teachers to detain students in the classroom during the lunch period as a disciplinary measure
  • 13.2 percent of middle/high schools have an open campus during lunch and open campus policies do not seem to affect school lunch program participation (e.g., Marni Posey said that she has some open campus schools in her district and food carts with reimbursable meals are placed at the exits to encourage students to eat lunch before leaving) 
  • The majority of lunch time activities (e.g., student government, fundraisers, spirit events, student clubs, etc.) are not being scheduled during the first part of the lunch period and if so, procedures are in place for students to receive their lunch before the activity begins
  • Many schools have procedures in place for students who are not finished eating when the lunch period ends to allow them to finish
  • The top challenges and barriers to providing adequate time to eat submitted were long lines, scheduling, not enough cafeteria space and/or seating, insufficient student supervision, food service staffing issues, and student behavior
  • Some of the best practices submitted for lunch were upgrading or adding points of service to speed up or shorten the lunch line; adding a lunch period or instituting staggered, overlapping lunches; students lining up alphabetically; adding additional staff to supervise in the cafeteria or on the lunch line; parents on campus to help provide lunchtime supervision; recess before lunch; implementing cafeteria exit policies such as dismissing students instead of allowing them to leave when finished or having timers in the cafeteria start when the last student in line sits down; and giving front of the lunch line passes to students at the end of the line as an incentive 

Nori Grossmann asked what the differences were between “food carts” and “grab n go” and the definitions were clarified. Clell Hoffman shared that teacher contracts are the biggest barrier to the amount of time students have for lunch. Ms. Hague said that extending the school day by 10 minutes could cost California an estimated $1.2 billion a year.

Ms. Chase Huegli and Ms. Hague informed the CNAC about the Smarter Lunchrooms Movement, which encourages the selection of fresh fruit and vegetables and other healthy choices using food and beverage placement techniques and strategies. The next step is posting the Best Practices Web page on the California Department of Education (CDE) Web site. Ms. Chase Huegli also informed the CNAC about Assembly Bill (AB) 2449 sponsored by the California Food Policy Advocates, which requires schools to provide adequate time to eat for students after being served. To learn more information about AB 2449, please visit the California Legislative Information External link opens in new window or tab. Web site. If the CDE is required to generate regulations, these regulations would be brought to the CNAC for input and advisory purposes.

Ms. Chase Huegli informed the CNAC that Whitney Staniford will present Government Affairs Division Updates and Legislative Updates at the next CNAC meeting on September 8, 2014.

CNAC Recommendations: No recommendations, only discussion/information sharing.


Item 2

From Oakland Unified School District (OUSD), Ali Goldstein, Garden Educator, and Park Guthrie, Garden Education Specialist, provided information about Instructional School Gardens.

Subject: Instructional School Gardens

Ali Goldstein and Park Guthrie provided information about Instructional School Gardens.

They provided the overview and benefits of school garden programs and garden-enhanced nutrition education including hands-on learning, students having a preference for vegetables, and increasing students’ nutrition knowledge. One of the model programs discussed was the Hoover Elementary School Garden Program, where Ms. Goldstein is one of the Garden Educators. She explained that learning the ecological principles from gardening increased the students’ engagement, learning, and connections. The thriving school garden also created other positive changes and outcomes for the students including OUSD piloting a program in which produce from the school garden can be used; doing community service by donating some of the produce; having positive empowerment; evaluating, analyzing, and contextualizing the progress in the plants they grew; using the science curriculum; learning ecological literacy; and drawing art. It also leads to talking about nutrition education (i.e., what it means to be healthy, what we are putting into our bodies, ingredient lists, where your food comes from, etc.) and food safety.

Barbara Rohrer asked if the water bill at the school increases, if the classes of students participating in the gardening project receive an academic grade, and if the teachers participate in the garden projects with the students. Ms. Goldstein said that the water usage is small compared to other water sources (e.g. the lawns) and they sometimes do not water for certain months by relying on the rain; therefore, she does not think the water bill at the school increases due to gardens. Ms. Goldstein also said that the classes of students participating in the garden project do not receive an academic grade right now and that the teachers do not usually go with the students and get involved. 

Mr. Guthrie informed the CNAC that there are currently about 65 school gardens (e.g., 15 robust programs, 20 small struggling programs, and 30 somewhat in-between programs). The 65 school gardens follow numerous models/types of programs (e.g., nonprofit, afterschool, during the school day, etc.) with 5,000 students monthly going 2 to 3 times annually to the gardens. He discussed the challenging patterns encountered with gardens, including that they are easier to start than to sustain, easier to create than to integrate into the school day, the access to garden education programming is currently inequitable, and the funding for garden educators is inconsistent. Mr. Guthrie also discussed the 3 legs of the Garden Education Program (integrated system) of Student Learning and Growth, which include the Program, Garden, and Teaching and Learning. He said there is no generic garden education program model, but the most common model for garden education classes in elementary schools is taking the whole class with two adults and splitting the class in half. Mr. Guthrie showed the per site per year costs table for funding of afterschool garden programs. He also showed the different funding sources used for school gardens through pie charts, which showed that a majority of stable funding is provided by grants (most of the other funding sources available are unstable). Mr. Guthrie lastly informed the CNAC about the key components shared across districts to start a school garden program, including teachers understanding the benefit of the school garden (e.g., garden education supports science education test scores) and having a good garden educator (e.g., making the connections to math and science curriculum depends on the garden educator). 

Ms. Chase Huegli informed the CNAC and presenters about additional activities occurring that support instructional gardens including the Farm to Fork Office partnership (CDE, California Department of Food and Agriculture, and California Department of Public Health) and the California Garden Network. In addition, she reinforced that districts want to ensure proper food safety measures working with their County Environmental Health Offices.

CNAC Recommendations: No recommendations, only discussion/information sharing.     


Item 3

Niki Sandoval was connected to the meeting via conference call.

From the NSD, Carol Chase Huegli, Associate Director, provided the Director Updates.

Subject: Nutrition Services Division Director’s Update
General Updates

Ms. Chase Huegli shared NSD updates on a variety of topics including the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National School Lunch Program (NSLP) Management Evaluation (ME) and spring request for additional positions. She informed the CNAC about the good marks the NSD received through the ME, including certification for districts, the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program, and Food Service Management Company Contracts.

The NSD recently received 15 new permanent positions to administer the School Nutrition Program Administrative Review and two two-year limited-term positions for the Child and Adult Care Food Program. Ms. Chase Huegli shared that the Administrative Reviews (AR) that are now occurring once every three years instead of once every five years are taking much longer than the NSD expected. She also informed the CNAC that the NSD is awaiting approval by the USDA to participate in the federal Direct Certification (DC) Demonstration Project with Medi-Cal. This project would allow automatic approval of eligible students who receive Medi-Cal for free school meals without application (e.g., helps conduct matches for Medi-Cal through DC on the California Longitudinal Pupil Achievement Data System).

Legislation Updates

Mr. Danzik informed the CNAC that the Smart Snacks in School (SSIS) federal requirements will go into effect as of July 1, 2014. The SSIS provisions will require six nutrition standards that will need to be met for any competitive food or beverage and one of three general standards: 1) must be a food group food; 2) must contain at least 10 percent Daily Value of calcium, fiber, or vitamin D; or 3) must be a combination food with at least ¼ cup of fruit or vegetable. She also said the new dietary guidelines will be coming out in the middle of 2016.

Ms. Chase Huegli informed the CNAC that the NSD is monitoring AB 2287. This bill would require school districts and county superintendents of schools to consider offering a gluten-free meal. Ms. Chase Huegli said that the current federal NSLP requirements allow such meal modifications to be requested.

CNAC Recommendations: No recommendations, only discussion/information sharing.        


The CNAC adjourned for lunch at 12:10 p.m.

The meeting was reconvened at 1:10 p.m. after lunch.

Item 4

A California School Nutrition Association video of Sandip Kaur, NSD Director, was viewed by the CNAC.

Ms. Sandoval was connected to the meeting via conference call.

From the NSD, Janice Hunt, Child Nutrition Supervisor I, provided information about the End of the year AR Updates.

Subject: End of the year Administrative Review Updates
What we learned in the first year

Ms. Hunt informed the CNAC of the end of the year AR Updates. She talked through the handout provided. The highlights of the AR Updates, lessons learned, significant issues, and ways to improve the process can be found in the School Nutrition Administrative Review: Lessons Learned Handout (DOC).

Nori Grossmann asked what happens if the school is not following the recipes. Kimberly Frinzell, Nutrition Education Administrator, said that the NSD offers quality trainings and lots of technical assistance to school food authorities. Ms. Hunt also shared that fiscal action for shortages of food components against the school is not taken until a second review happens and they are found noncompliant again. Larry Herrera and Caroline Danielson asked clarifying questions on the AR process and verification of site meal applications. Soo Zee Park also commented on how long and involved the Off-site Assessment Tool questions and process are and that it would have been better if the Off-site Assessment Tool was sent earlier, as well as notifying the district which sites were selected for review. Soo Zee Park also said the on-site review of the applications took a lot of time.

Ms. Hunt informed the CNAC that the NSD completes the randomization of the applications through the random selection tool on Excel for verifying applications, which takes a lot of time. Clell Hoffman offered suggestions to improve and streamline the randomized application process (e.g., exporting a list of student applications in a batch report to the schools and using certain software programs and companies to randomize the applications and speed up the process). In the future, the NSD is planning to use the Child Nutrition Information and Payment System, which will take less time and have a positive user impact. Ms. Hunt said that the percentage of applications the NSD needs to review is based on the number of certification documents the school collects. Ms. Hunt also said that the applications do not need to have an original signature. Soo Zee Park said there was also confusion with her reviewer and vendor regarding the meal pattern requirements for a shorter week (e.g., for a 4-day week, do they need to meet all requirements for a regular 5-day week or only 80 percent of the requirements).

CNAC Recommendations: No recommendations, only discussion/information sharing.          


Item 5

From the CNAC, Larry Herrera, Chairperson of the CNAC, provided information about the CNAC Membership Election Nominations.

Subject: CNAC Membership Election Nominations
CNAC Vice Chairperson

Nominations for the Vice CNAC Chairperson were called by Larry Herrera and voting occurred. The CNAC elected Soo Zee Park as the Vice Chairperson for the CNAC.

CNAC Recommendations: Approve Soo Zee Park as the Vice Chairperson for the CNAC.

ACTION: Member Lucy McProud nominated Soo Zee Park and moved to approve the CNAC recommendations.

Member Barbara Rohrer seconded the motion.

Yes votes: Nori Grossmann, Soo Zee Park, Clell Hoffman, Carol Chase Huegli, Larry Herrera, Marni Posey, and Caroline Danielson.

No votes: None.

Members Absent: Colleen You and Trish Vance.

Abstentions: None.

The motion passed with seven votes.

Item 6

From the NSD, Carol Chase Huegli, Associate Director, Kimberly Frinzell, Nutrition Education Administrator, and Michael Danzik, Nutrition Education Consultant, provided information about the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 (HHFKA) Implementation.

Subject: The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 Implementation
National Discussion and where is California

Ms. Chase Huegli informed the CNAC about the School Nutrition Association’s (SNA) waiver process attempt through Congress for the SSIS rule. She informed the CNAC of the SNA Position Paper that has several components in their legislative platform including meal pattern flexibility (i.e., pushing to retain initial meal requirements and not moving forward with requirements being implemented July 1, 2014), keeping whole grain offerings at 50 percent (not 100 percent), removing requirements completely for offer versus serve (e.g., ½ cup serving of fruit/vegetable), giving schools another year (July 1, 2015) to implement the competitive foods and beverages requirements, and having no position on sodium targeting. For more information on the SNA Position Paper, please visit the SNA Policy Resources External link opens in new window or tab. Web page.

In February 2014, the California School Nutrition Association (CSNA) released their position on these issues. The CSNA strongly stated to continue flexibility and give schools more time by delaying the implementation on School Breakfast requirements effective July 1, 2014 (e.g., 1 cup fruit requirement, 100 percent whole grain-rich items, and sodium), but gave no extended time frame. The White House is heavily in support on keeping the requirements the way they are. In May 2014, Tom Torlakson, State Superintendent of Public Instruction, was in full support of keeping the requirements going and was confident these standards were worthwhile to implement. Challenges with the July 1, 2014, changes discussed include breakfast in the classroom and especially the cost of food and increasing employee pay.

U.S. Department of Agriculture Policies

Ms. Frinzell discussed the USDA Policies since the April 14, 2014, CNAC Meeting. Some of the USDA Policy Memorandums include:

  • SP 41-2014: Clarification of the Policy on Food Consumption Outside of Foodservice Area, and the Whole Grain-Rich Requirement, which clarifies existing policies and will soon require foods served to be 100 percent whole grain-rich (“whole grain-rich” means a grain item must be at least 50 percent whole grain)
  • SP 43-2014: Questions & Answers on the School Breakfast Program Meal Pattern in School Year 2014–15, which clarifies policy guidance on the breakfast meal requirements
  • SP 47-2014: Flexibility for Whole Grain-Rich Pasta in School Years 2014–15 and 2015–16, which allows state agencies to establish waiver criteria for the whole grain-rich requirements for schools that demonstrate a hardship to this request

Clell Hoffman and Marni Posey commented that the 100 percent whole grain-rich pasta products they have used have fallen apart and they can only use certain brands and types of pasta. This might make implementation harder for other schools for the whole grain-rich requirement as well as having similar experiences with certain whole grain-rich products.

Mr. Danzik informed the CNAC that the USDA, Food and Nutrition Service has issued six Policy Memoranda about national competitive foods and beverages called SSIS. Some of the USDA Policy Memorandums include: 

  • SP 35-2014, Grain Entrées Related to the Smart Snacks in School Standards, which provides the option of selling grain-only items as a competitive entrée under Section 210.11 of the Code of Federal Regulations, also known as the SSIS rule. The nutrition requirements for a competitive entrée are more lenient than for the foods that fit the competitive “snack” requirement. But, because California’s stricter definition states that an entrée is at least two food groups, we cannot consider a grain-only item as a competitive entrée so it must meet the stricter competitive “snack” requirements to be compliant.

  • SP 36-2014, Smart Snacks Nutrition Standards and Exempt Fundraisers, which provides state agency responsibility to establish a set number of exempted fundraisers in schools under the SSIS rule. This Policy Memo also allows states to create a waiver process whereas school districts can petition the state to ask for more than the allowed fundraiser exemptions set by the state. Due to strict current competitive state rules, California cannot allow exempted fundraisers—so California set zero as the number of exempt fundraisers. California is also not developing a waiver process so school districts will not be allowed to ask for additional exempted fundraisers. All fundraisers directed to students during the school day on the school campus must meet the competitive food and beverage requirements.
Training and Technical Assistance Support

Ms. Frinzell informed the CNAC that the NSD wants to provide more tools to be successful, more training, and more coordinating for moving forward. This includes successful meal planning, procurements trainings, and best practice meal planning trainings. In addition, the NSD issues an e-newsletter (InStepp) describing current policies and training opportunities to food service directors in an effort for them to be more successful. Ms. Frinzell also informed the CNAC that the plan and goal for the CSNA State Day at the annual conference is being successful for the AR.

Beth Rice asked about offer versus serve for a 1 cup fruit/vegetable serving. Kim Frinzell clarified the offer versus serve requirement, which is that the school must offer 1 cup of a fruit/vegetable serving to students, but the student must take at least a ½ cup of the fruit/vegetable serving for the school to be reimbursed for the meal component. Clell Hoffman also addressed and discussed the food waste issue he is facing at his schools with the CNAC.

CNAC Recommendations: No recommendations, only discussion/information sharing.      


Item 7
Agenda for the September 8, 2014, meeting

The following were suggested as agenda items:

  1. NSD Director’s Update and Federal Regulation Updates with Sandip Kaur and Carol Chase Huegli
  2. Government Affairs Division Updates and Legislative Updates with Whitney Staniford
  3. Increasing Eating, Decreasing Food Waste Discussion
    1. Repealing food requirements: removing the requirement that students must select?
    2. Brainstorming what position the CNAC should take
    3. What is going on in school districts
    4. Offer versus serve requirement
  4. CNAC Members Work Priorities and Projects
  5. Breakfast in the Classroom
    1. How it is funded, how it works, and what is the process
    2. Data of school districts in California
  6. Direct Certification
    1. Monthly check?
  7. Agenda for the next meeting

Barbara Rohrer moved and Lucy McProud seconded that the meeting be adjourned. The CNAC voted to adjourn at 2:50 p.m.

Questions:   Nutrition Services Division | 800-952-5609
Last Reviewed: Wednesday, March 8, 2017
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