McIntyre Advocates for Better, Healthier School Lunches for North Carolina Kids
Would Fight Obesity, Provide Healthier Meals, and Improve Fitness
Washington, D.C. — U.S. Representative Mike McIntyre has introduced bi-partisan legislation to help schools prepare more nutritious meals for kids, legislation which has already received national recognition. This legislation seeks to help schools by addressing a lack of resources, equipment, and training of staff to meet the new requirements for nutrition standards for school meals.
Congressman McIntyre stated, “Students need healthy meals to be successful in the classroom, and we should always do everything we can to put them on the path to success. Helping our schools meet this challenge should be a priority for all!”
The Pew Charitable Trust recently issued a statement recognizing this as a significant step to help children nationwide.
The School Food Modernization Act would help schools improve their meal programs in two ways. One part of the legislation would authorize a USDA competitive grant program through which schools could obtain training and technical assistance for foodservice employees. The program’s goal is to provide training and technical assistance to a region, rather than to work through each state. Up to $10 million of grant funding will be available to schools.
The second part of the bill would assist school districts in the purchasing of major equipment or improvements of school kitchen and lunchroom facilities. Under this program, the USDA would provide targeted grants and guarantee loans from commercial banks, credit unions, and similar establishments at a time when schools can take advantage of very low interest rates. The USDA has a long and successful history of running this type of program; so much so that this program would be scored as “no cost” to taxpayers.
Congressman Tom Latham of Iowa joined Congressman McIntyre in introducing this bill.
The Pew Charitable Trust issued the following statement on the School Food Modernization Act, H.R. 1783:
"We commend Representatives Tom Latham (R-IA) and Mike McIntyre (D-NC) for reintroducing the School Food Modernization Act, a bipartisan bill to help replace outdated equipment and provide training to food service staff on the preparation of safe, healthful meals.
"Many school kitchens were built decades ago to simply reheat and hold foods. As a result, many food service workers don't have the training or tools required to bake, grill, and roast healthier foods. The need to upgrade school kitchen infrastructure and improve staff training is now more critical than ever.
"Schools' needs vary tremendously. Some need funding for lower-cost items, while others might require a total kitchen overhaul. With more than 31 million children eating at least one meal provided by their school each day, this bill is the right step to ensure schools provide safer, healthier, and more appealing meals for millions of schoolchildren."