Federal and State Government Aid

and standards for public school food.

United States aid and standards

Financial Standards

The U.S. requires that schools use a large portion of their budget on school lunches. Yet, this does not mean that the schools will use this money to get healthy nutritious food. Schools may use the money to buy low quality meats, cheeses, and drink options in order to save money and use the bare minimum that they can on school food.

Nutrition Standards

Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act was created by First Lady Michelle Obama and signed by President Obama in 2010. It was the first major change to school meals in the last 15 years. The act will make lower-fat milk options, make sure that water is free, it will require that kids with no lunch money are given alternate meals, it will revise the nutrition standards for meals, and many financial benefits and restrictions to schools.

Illinois Aid and Standards

Regulation Standards

Regulations for school lunches include the prohibition of the sale of foods of minimal nutritional value. The Federal meals program prohibits "competitive foods", which are foods sold in competition with federal school food programs.


Federal regulations also define these following foods as "Foods of minimal nutritional value" These foods cannot be sold in Illinois schools.

-Soda Water

-Ice pops (except ice pops that contain fruit or fruit juices)

-Chewing Gum

-Candies such as

--Hard candy such as sour balls, lollipops, mints, and couch drops

--Jellies and Gums such as gum drops, jelly beans, and gummi bear products

--Marshmallow

--Fondant, ex. candy corn

--Licorice

--Spun Candy, ex cotton candy

--candy coated popcorn.


The USDA (United States Department of Agriculture) does not require school to serve/not serve any particular foods, but the meals must meet the Federal nutrition requirements.

Illinois School Breakfast and Lunch Program

The National School Lunch Program (NSBP) and the School Breakfast Program (SBP) are voluntary programs executed by the state, which gives help to parents who can't afford to pay for their child's school lunches.


In order to qualify for this aid you need to reach the following requirements.

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