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Smart Snacks In School
USDA Dietary Guidelines
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Welcome to Mercedes Child Nutrition Services!


USDA Federal Regulations

ARM Section 19.23

July 18, 2018

Adults Eating from a Student’s Tray

Parents or caretakers occasionally visit their children during mealtime. TDA encourages their
involvement in students’ education and the nutrition program. However, an adult is not
allowed to consume all or part of a meal served to a student. If an adult eats from a student’s
tray, that meal is not reimbursable.

Required Response to an Adult Eating from a Student’s Tray

If an adult eats from a student’s tray, SNP staff must inform the adult that the meal is for
the student’s consumption and that the adult must either purchase a meal at the school,
bring in an outside meal to eat, not eat from the student’s tray, or not eat with the


The Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP)

For School year 2019 - 2020, to the following Elementary Schools, thank you for participating in the Fresh Fruits and Vegetable Program (FFVP):

  • Hinojosa Elementary
  • Taylor Elementary
  • Travis Elementary
  • Kennedy ElementaryPhotos/FFVP Menu Feb 2020.JPG


Students who participate in the FFVP program are introduced to a variety of fruits and vegetables each month. These are opportunities to teach children healthy eating habits and lifestyles. It can take a few or more tries before you like certain foods. But if you keep trying, you may start to like all sorts of healthy fruits and vegetables. 

Go to our photo gallery to see what fruits and vegetables have been served for this year!



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Adequate Meal Service Periods

USDA encourages schools to make every effort to establish meal periods that are long enough for children to fully consume their meals and to provide an environment conducive to eating those meals. It is important, both nutritionally and socially, to give children sufficient time, a conducive atmosphere, and a safe environment to eat nutritious meals.

Meal Times for Breakfast & Lunch

Regular meal times specified in regulations for the NSLP have been identified as 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Breakfast hours would be identified as meal service prior to 10 a.m. in most circumstances. CEs are encouraged to allow students to eat breakfast when they are late arriving at school. However, this is not a requirement.



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