Resource | Technical Assistance
Guide to Professional Standards for School Nutrition Programs

A central resource outlining the USDA Professional Standards requirements for state and local school nutrition professionals.

Resource | Technical Assistance & Guidance
Professional Standards: Resources

Professional Standards resources

Resource | Policy Memos | FNS-GD-2020-0002
Questions & Answers Regarding Professional Standards for State and Local School Nutrition Program Personnel

This Q&A memorandum is designed to provide an overview of the policies related to the Professional Standards regulations for state and local school nutrition program personnel. 

SP05-2020
Resource | Technical Assistance & Guidance
Nutrition Standards for School Meals

This page contains regulations, policy memos, and other guidance materials relating to the nutrition standards for the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program.

Resource | Technical Assistance
Professional Standards

Professional Standards for school nutrition professionals is a key provision of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. The final rule, published March 2, 2015, requires a minimum amount of annual training hours for all state directors of school nutrition programs, state director of distributing agencies, school nutrition program directors, managers, and staff.

Resource | Toolkits
Tools for Schools: Focusing on Smart Snacks

A number of tools and resources are available to help schools identify food items that meet Smart Snacks criteria. See the resources below for information about the Smart Snacks requirement, helpful tools, and ways to encourage children to make healthier snack choices that give them the nutrition they need to grow and learn.

Resource | Toolkits
Tools for Schools

Tools for Schools offers topic-specific policy and resource materials to assist schools in meeting the new nutrition standards. Refer to the latest regulations, find free nutrition education curricula, or get ideas for adding tasty, kid-friendly foods to enhance your school meals program.

Resource | Final Rule
Final Rule: Hiring Flexibility under Professional Standards

This final rule adds four flexibilities to the hiring standards for new school nutrition program directors in small local educational agencies and new state directors of school nutrition programs under the Professional Standards regulations for the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program.

Resource | Technical Assistance & Guidance
Unpaid Meal Charges

The goal of the school meal programs is to provide nutritious meals to children during the school day. Children may receive breakfast and lunch at no cost to them if they are categorically eligible for free meals or if they qualify for free meals based on federal poverty guidelines. Sometimes, however, children who do not qualify based on these standards would like a breakfast or lunch, but do not have money in their account or in-hand to cover the cost of the meal at the time of the meal service.

Resource | Proposed Rule
Proposed Rule: Hiring Flexibility Under Professional Standards

This proposed rule would add four flexibilities to the hiring standards for new school nutrition program directors in small local educational agencies and new school nutrition program state directors under the professional standards regulations for the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs.