Resource | Research | Assessing/Improving Operations
National School Lunch Program Application/Verification Pilot Project: Report on First Year Experience

Twenty-two School Food Authorities across 16 states began testing pilot procedures in 2000-01 to determine and verify the eligibility of children for Free and Reduced Price (F/RP) school meals. Three pilot F/RP eligibility determination models are being tested over a three-year period. 

Resource | Research | Assessing/Improving Operations
School Meals Initiative Implementation Study: Third Year Report

The National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and the School Breakfast Program (SBP) are key components of a national policy designed to safeguard and promote the nutritional well-being of the Nation’s children. The programs are administered by the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), operating through state agencies (SAs) that have agreements with the local school systems in their States. Despite the progress that has been achieved over the years in enhancing the quality of school meals, results of research conducted in the early 1990s indicated that school meals, on balance, were failing to meet certain key nutritional goals. In light of these findings, the USDA launched a far-reaching reform of the school meals programs, a reform aimed at upgrading the nutritional content of school meals. The reform began in late 1993 with public hearings followed by a proposed rule in 1994 and a final rule in 1995. The several elements of this reform are collectively referred to as the School Meals Initiative for Healthy Children (SMI). The status of this initiative, together with an examination of selected operational issues of these programs, are the principal subjects of this report.

Resource | Research | Food/Nutrient Analysis
School Lunch Salad Bars

This report fulfills a request to the Department of Agriculture (USDA) from the Appropriations Committee Directives, Fiscal Year 2002. As requested, this report compares the availability of fruits and vegetables in schools with and without salad bars using data from the School Nutrition Dietary Assessment Study, Part II (SNDA-II), which were collected during the School Year (SY) 1998-99. SNDA-II data enables us to examine the choice and variety of foods offered at salad bars, but not the quantity in a typical serving or the amount consumed.

Resource | Research | Nutrition Education
Nutrition Education in FNS: A Coordinated Approach for Promoting Healthy Behaviors

This report fulfills the request from Congress in the House Appropriations Committee Report (House Report 107-116), which accompanied the Agriculture Appropriations Act for fiscal year 2002. The conference report included the following statement: “The nutritional status of our young people is a matter of public health. The Committee expects the Department to build upon work already done with the food pyramid, and other innovative national and local efforts. Nutrition information should be carefully reviewed so that a consistent and coordinated message is disseminated. Existing opportunities to convey nutrition messages, including newsletters, static displays in cafeterias, in-school and cable television productions should be used to the maximum extent possible. The committee directs the Department to provide a report regarding the development and implementation of this effort by February 1, 2002."

Resource | Research | Food/Nutrient Analysis
State Monitoring of National School Lunch Program Nutritional Content

This study was conducted within RAND's Center for the Study of Food and Nutrition Policy as part of RAND's Child Nutrition Analysis Project (CNAP) with the United States "Nutritional Monitoring Data". This document reports on the study of state nutritional monitoring data and should be of benefit to those interested in the operations of child nutrition programs.

Resource | Research | Nutrition Education
Promoting Healthy Eating: An Investment In the Future

This report fulfills a Congressional request for the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) to report on "a comprehensive, integrated approach to nutrition education as a complement to the various nutrition assistance programs." FNS reviewed its current nutrition education efforts, and consulted with a wide range of nutrition education experts and stakeholders.

Resource | Research | Assessing/Improving Operations
Current Population Survey Analysis of NSLP Participation and Income

This report examines data from the Current Population Survey (CPS) in order to analyze trends in free and reduced price certification and participation in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) during the period of 1993-1997. The data indicate that free certifications for NSLP as a percentage of CPS estimated eligibles have been increasing for several years and was 118% in 1997 (latest available). Moreover, although combined free and reduced price certifications as a percentage of estimated eligibles is still under 100%, this percentage has also been increasing for several years and will likely exceed 100% when 1998 CPS data is available. Nearly all states (49 of 51) had an increase in their total number of free and reduced price certifications as a percentage of estimated eligibles between 1993-1997.

Resource | Research | Assessing/Improving Operations
Feasibility Study of Capturing Food Data at Checkout

In the past, the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) has relied on a series of large surveys to gather and compare information on food expenditures and food consumption among participants and non-participants to better understand the impacts of the Food Stamp Program (FSP) on the diet and nutritional status of program participants. Studies based on survey data, however, have a number of drawbacks, including the time and expense of collecting the survey data, sampling error, response bias, errors in respondent recall, and misinformation about what may have been purchased or consumed.

Resource | Research | Food Security
Household Food Security in the United States 1995-1998 (Advance Report)

The advance report of preliminary findings for the period 1995-1998 introduces the second installment in the annual series, Measuring Food Security in the United States.

Resource | Research | Nutrition Education
Conference on Access to Food September 18-19, 1995 Report of the Proceedings November 1996

The Conference on Access to Food, held in Washington, D.C., on September 18 and 19, 1995, was sponsored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Consumer Service (FCS). The conference was held to bring together food access experts to share their knowledge and help USDA build an agenda to increase access to food for low-income Americans.