Corpus Christi ISD puts the focus on students.
The “Food Advisory Team” at Corpus Christi ISD (CCISD) is composed of high school students, from each high school in the district, who meet once a month with school staff members and CCISD Food Services administrators. The team is led by a student president and serves to provide input on their school cafeteria offerings. The monthly meetings are held for one hour before the start of the school day, during which time students taste test new recipes and products before they are built into the menus, as well as provide feedback and suggestions on how to improve school meals. Students also receive important school food policy updates. Membership in the group is open to all high school students and, in addition to providing feedback, the group chooses one service project each year that focuses on giving back to the community. Click here for a sample assessment form used by CCISD to collect student input.
Create a Fun Experience Around Seasonal Menu Items
In recognition of
National School Lunch Week (NSLW), TDA developed suggested menus that feature recipes with seasonal, Texas ingredients. Whether you choose to incorporate one or all of these recipes, NSLW is a great opportunity to get student feedback about menu items that are new to your school lunch menu during this limited time event. One idea would be to make a play on the NSLW theme of “Score Big” by creating a score card for students to vote on whether a new menu item is a “Single,” “Double,” “Triple” or “Out of the park!” The menu item with the most votes can land a recurring place on the menu, as a student-selected favorite. Access these menus through the Square Meals
website, and don’t forget to pledge your commitment to the Local Products Challenge!
Student Input Provides Valuable Feedback
It may seem like a lot
of work to evaluate how students feel about school meals, but in fact, seeking student input can be simple and fun. Not only can you receive helpful information to improve menu items, but students feel more engaged with their school meals when they are given a voice and a choice. Here are some steps to get you started!
- Decide which element of your menu you would like to evaluate (new menu item or existing item that is not selling well).
- Select an evaluation method (surveys, scorecards, comment cards, voting boxes, focus groups, product sampling, etc).
- Establish a time frame (such as one lunch period) and participation goal (such as 50 students).
- Assign staff to conduct and collect the evaluations.
- Review the results and build a list of possible action plans to address findings.