Your Stars, Your Tray, Your Way!
An innovative approach to serving school lunch will mean more food choices for students in school meal programs and minimize plate waste in the Little Rock School District. Tuesday, February 12, 2013, the District's Child Nutrition Department will begin implementing the National School Lunch Program-Healthy School Meals initiative called "Offer Versus Serve" (OVS) in elementary schools for students in grades 3 through 5.
OVS, also known as the "Your Stars, Your Tray, Your Way," meal plan is designed to help students identify food groups and know what food will be served in each group. There are five colors that represent the different food groups offered: Fruit (red), Vegetable (green), Grain (orange), Meat/Meat Alternative (purple) and Milk (blue). Students must select 3 food groups and 1 must be a fruit or vegetable. All 5 colors are best, but "3-a-day" equal a healthy tray.
OVS Lunch Requirements
- All five-food components must be offered to all students (meat/meat alternate; grains; fruit; vegetables; and low fat or fat-free milk
- Serving sizes for all food components must equal the required quantities for each grade group specified in the National School Lunch Program pattern
- Meals must be priced as a unit, i.e., students pay the same price regardless of whether or not they take three, four, or five food components
- Students must take at least three (3) of the five (5) food components offered, including at least ½ cup serving of fruit or vegetables and the full serving of the other chosen food component
- Students may decline any one (1) or two (2) of the other required food components but are encouraged to accept all five (5)
"We hope to build partnerships with students, teachers and the school nutrition staff as we use this program to teach healthy eating habits," said Lilly Bouie, director of LRSD's Child Nutrition Department.
Students and parents will receive handouts with information regarding the upcoming changes. Additionally, the cafeterias on each campus will have signage promoting the food groups and choices. Find out more healthy tips on LRSD's Nutrition page - click here to be redirected to the page.