In a controversial move, the federal government is exploring the possibility of fining schools that disregard nutrition rules for school lunch programs.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service has proposed a rule that would impose fines on schools that and state agencies that do not meet the standards of the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act. The regulation would impose fines on schools and states for “egregious or persistent disregard” of standards for sodium and calorie limits, or not serving whole grains.
In one instance, a preschool teacher in West Virginia was found to have violated the rules when she rewarded her students for good behavior with candy. No fines were imposed, but the school had to take corrective action and develop training on the policies.
The proposal also applies to private institutions and child care providers participating in federal nutrition programs.