Nebraska Summer Meals Update

June 2022

Summer Food Service Program Guidance

The SFSP has a variety of program handbooks to serve as support resources for sponsor and site staff. The NDE encourages all sponsor staff to utilize the handbooks as training resources to ensure internal policies and procedures adhere to programmatic requirements and demonstrate alignment with best practices.

Visit the SFSP guides at the links below:

Bring the Farm to Summer Meals

With harvest coming into their peaks, summer is a perfect time to highlight local menu options and to get kids involved in food, agriculture, and nutrition-based activities. Incorporating local foods into summer meals programs adds variety to keep meals tasting great, connects the community with local agricultural producers, and provides hands-on enrichment activities that keep children and teens nourished and engaged while school is out.

Summer meals can incorporate Farm to Summer principles in a couple of simple ways:

  • Conduct taste tests or cooking demonstrations with local foods.
  • Purchase locally produced summer meals items from farmers markets and community gardens.
Farm to Summer

Summer Food, Summer Moves

Visit the USDA's Summer Food, Summer Moves toolkit for ideas and resources designed to get kids and families excited about healthy eating and physical activity during the summer months. The kit is designed for use by summer meals site operators and focuses on using music, games, art, and movement to motivate kids and families to choose more fruits and vegetables, choose water instead of sugary drinks, get enough physical activity every day, and limit screen time.

Download the activity guide here:



Turnip the Beet with high quality summer meals!

Summer meals have a positive impact on children and communities by providing nutritious meals, sourcing local foods, and encouraging healthy behaviors. The USDA's Turnip the Beet award recognizes exceptional SFSP sponsors that offer high-quality, appetizing, appealing, and nutritious meals.

Who is eligible, and how do they apply?

All SFSP sponsors may all be eligible for a Turnip the Beet award. Submit a self-nomination or nominate a sponsor you see engaging in achieving the goals the Turnip the Beet aims to recognize. The nomination must include a completed nomination form, which can be found here, and a detailed one-month menu.

How are nominations evaluated?

Nominations must clearly showcase how meals are appealing, appetizing, and nutritious. The nomination form and menu are evaluated with a range of criteria based on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The criteria include serving local foods, serving a variety of fruits and vegetables, serving whole grains and low-fat and fat-free dairy products, serving low sodium foods, culturally-appropriate meals, and hosting taste tests.

What are the prizes?

Besides making a positive impact in your community, three award levels are available: bronze, silver, and gold. All winners receive a certificate and are featured in the Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) summer newsletter. Gold and silver winners will be featured in USDA's blog, and gold winners will be identified as Turnip the Beet winners on FNS's Capacity Builder.

Funding Opportunity: School Breakfast Program Expansion Grant

If your school is looking ahead to SY2022-23, keep this funding opportunity in mind! School food authorities (SFAs) can receive up to $10,000 each school year to help maintain, establish, or expand school breakfast programs. All schools located within U.S. Territories are eligible to apply.

The grant application is due July 13, 2022 and can be found here.

Check Your Procedure: Claims for Reimbursement

Submission of SFSP claims for reimbursement in a timely manner is essential for prompt receipt of meal reimbursement. Check your organization's procedure to ensure it accounts for specifics outlined below and can support accurate claim consolidation and submission on or before the 60-day deadline.

  • Claim meal totals should be determined after the final snack/meal has been served for the claim month.
  • Consolidate the claim total and submit to receive a confirmation code in the CNP system on or before 12:00 p.m. (CST) on 10th of the month to receive reimbursement funds as quickly as possible.
  • If a claim is submitted and accepted by the CNP system after 12:00 p.m. (CST) on the 10th, the claim will not be processed until the 10th of the following month.
  • The last day to submit a claim is 60 days following the last day of the month covering the claim. Visit the Last Day To Submit a Claim table for a full list of 60-day claim deadlines by month.

Summer Meals Resources

  • Nutrition Guide for Sponsors: this tool helps sponsors plan and serve menus with a variety of nutrient-rich foods and beverages.
  • Summer Meals Toolkit: this toolkit provides creative ideas for program operators and community partners to make summer meal planning easy, to raise awareness for summer meals, and strategies for overcoming barriers to serve nutritious foods that are appealing to children.
  • Farm to Summer Factsheet: this factsheet identifies strategies for integrating local food into summer meals.
  • FNS Documents and Resources: this resource offers free nutrition education materials that help reinforce and complement the nutrition messages taught by serving healthful foods.
  • Kids Gardening Grant Opportunities: fund your next youth garden project with a grant from Kids Gardening!

In accordance with federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation), disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity.

Program information may be made available in languages other than English. Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication to obtain program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language), should contact the responsible state or local agency that administers the program or USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TTY) or contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339.

To file a program discrimination complaint, a Complainant should complete a Form AD-3027, USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form which can be obtained online at:, from any USDA office, by calling (866) 632-9992, or by writing a letter addressed to USDA. The letter must contain the complainant’s name, address, telephone number, and a written description of the alleged discriminatory action in sufficient detail to inform the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights (ASCR) about the nature and date of an alleged civil rights violation. The completed AD-3027 form or letter must be submitted to USDA by:

(1) Mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20250-9410;

(2) Fax: (202) 690-7442; or

(3) Email:

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.