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National School Lunch Program Outreach Toolkit

National School Lunch Program Outreach Toolkit

The templates and resources on this page are designed to help promote the importance and value of school meals. All materials may be tailored to meet local needs.

Marketing Tools and Talking Points

Resources and tailored messages for marketing and talking to your community about school and summer meal programs.

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Marketing School & Summer Meals

School Meal Talking Points

Print Ready Resources

These materials are ready to download, print, and distribute.

Social Media

Want to promote school meals to families? Research shows using Facebook is a great strategy to reach them. Instagram is also a great tool to reach students to promote participation in school meals.

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Customizable Resources

A child holding a carrot and broccoli in one hand, and an apple in the other.

Offer versus Serve Letter to Households Template

[District name and department title] uses a menu planning option called Offer versus Serve at [breakfast and/or lunch]. Offer versus Serve allows students to select and decline some of the foods offered at each meal. Offer versus Serve helps reduce food waste and allows students to take foods that meet their preferences and hunger levels.

At breakfast, students may select from grains, fruit and milk. At lunch, students may select from grains, protein foods, fruits, vegetables and milk. Offer versus Serve requires students to select at least ½ cup of fruits and/or vegetables and at least two other foods items or components for their free meal. Students may also select all food items offered for the meal.

The meal programs are designed to provide students with well-balanced meals to meet their nutritional needs and fuel their learning. Our program receives federal and state funding for each meal that meets the U.S. Department of Agriculture requirements. This funding helps us provide free meals to all students. When students select less than what is required for the free meal, such as only a carton of milk or an entree, we do not receive funding and must charge an a la carte price to cover the costs. 

[Optional: insert additional information about a la carte prices or student accounts]. 

Each cafeteria has signage posted explaining what students may take as part of their free meal. [Department title] staff are also available to assist students with selecting foods. 

Please reach out to [name and contact information] with any questions.

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