Who decides the lunch menu?
What changes will occur with the new federal guidelines?
What benefits will the new guidelines have on our students?
What are some of the current Rock on Cafe initiatives?
What are some new nutritious, delicious, and kid-friendly Rock on Cafe menu items?
What should I do if my child has food allergies or other special dietary needs?
What is the role of the Rock on Cafe Registered Dietitian in the school lunch program?
Who decides the lunch menu?

The Food Service Directors from all of the participating districts work together with their nutrition expert, Julie Raway, MPH, RDN, CDN, SNS, to plan the menu.  Most importantly, all new products and recipes are KID TASTE TESTED before they are placed on the menu!

What changes will occur with the new federal guidelines?

The new federal guidelines provide important, healthy changes to our school lunch programs.  The students will be seeing more fruit and vegetable options in their lunch lines.  There will be an increase in the variety of fruits and vegetables as well as the amounts offered.  The new guidelines require the students take a serving of fruit and/or vegetables each day.  You will also be seeing more whole grains included on the menu.  The regulations are putting a limit on sodium and saturated fats as well as providing caloric guidelines for three specific groups, K-5, 6-8, and 9-12.

What benefits will the new guidelines have on our students?

The new guidelines will be providing the students with more nutritious breakfast and lunch options.  It is important that our children receive nutritious meals during the school day to keep them healthy, energized, and ready to learn!

The increased variety of fruits and vegetables that the Rock on Café will be serving may introduce fruits and vegetables to your child that they may not be familiar with.

What are some of the current Rock on Cafe initiatives?

HealthierUS Schools

Seven Rock on Café schools received the HealthierUS Gold of Distinction Awards, four received HealthierUS Silver Awards and twenty two received HealthierUS Bronze Awards from the United States Department of Agriculture for creating healthier schools. These awards recognize their achievement at creating a healthier school community through nutrition education, physical activity, and healthy school lunches. This has encouraged other schools to follow the HealthierUS meal patterns throughout all the school districts.

Farm To School

Partnering with Cornell Cooperative Extension, several schools are starting to work with local farmers to provide fresh local products to schools. All of the Rock on Cafe™ schools participate in Farm To You Fest by including local foods on their menus and advertising the benefits of local products. Additionally, the Rock on Café received a grant to process local foods so that produce available in the summer can be used throughout the school year!

Sodium Grant

Rock on Cafe™ has recently collaborated with the Broome County Health Department and the Center for Disease Control to reduce the sodium content in school lunches by incorporating new lower sodium products and new recipe developments into the menu. Over 2,381 pounds was cut in 2 years!

Breakfast Initiatives

Partnering with United Health Services, Rex & Roxy are spokespersons promoting breakfast across all 15 school districts to encourage children to eat breakfast.

Staff Training

The Rock on Cafe™ program has designed its own staff training to ensure consistency of good quality service, employee safety, and the safety of food prepared for students.

What are some new nutritious, delicious, and kid-friendly Rock on Cafe menu items?

The Yogurt Meal is a new meal that will be an option for student’s everyday with the Rock on Café.  The Yogurt Meal consists of a yogurt, a mozzarella cheese stick, whole wheat soft pretzel, fresh fruits, fresh vegetables, and low fat milk.

Rock on Café will be featuring a different delicious salad options.  The salad options include, but are not limited to, Chef Salad, Fajita Chicken Salad, Turkey Bacon Ranch Salad, and Popper’s Salad.  Each salad will be served with a whole wheat soft pretzel, fruits, vegetables, and low fat milk.  

What should I do if my child has food allergies or other special dietary needs?

If your child has food allergies or other special dietary needs, download the Diet Prescription for Meals at School Form.  This form must be completed and signed by a licensed physician.  Send the completed form to the Rock on Café Registered Dietitian:

Julie Raway, MPH, RDN, CDN, SNS
BT BOCES Food Services
1 North Loder Avenue
Endicott, NY  13760

The Rock on Café Registered Dietitian will review the form.  Schools will provide appropriate lunches to children with food allergies or other special dietary needs.

What is the role of the Rock on Cafe Registered Dietitian in the school lunch program?

Julie Raway, MPH, RDN, CDN, SNS, the Rock on Café Registered Dietitian, plays many roles in the school meal programs. She is involved with menu planning, and assures that monthly menus align with the federal regulations as well as the HealthierUS School Challenge standards. Julie is also involved in recipe development activities, helping to create new recipes using the most nutritious ingredients possible. She also creates Rock on Café educational and promotional materials. If you have nutrition-related questions, please use the “Ask the RD” feature on our website.

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