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School Lunch & Nutrition

3906367916_2589b6e55fSchool lunches at Peralta Elementary

Lunch is for sale in the cafeteria, also known as the multipurpose room. The full price of school lunch is $2.25 and includes milk and our salad bar. The price without salad bar is $1.25.

  • Reduced price lunch (if you apply and receive notification that you qualify): $.30
  • If you financially qualify for free lunch for your child there is no cost.

If you qualify for full or reduced price lunch, you will receive documentation from Peralta’s school secretary Cathy Wong asking for your monthly school lunch money up front. If you want your child to eat the school lunch and have not filled out a free/reduced lunch application, please send the child to school with lunch money so he/she can pay in the lunch line. If your child needs to pay but doesn’t have money, the lunch staff will allow a grace period of a few days to continue eating lunch while the request goes home to you for payment. If you qualify for a free or reduced lunch, but do not plan to eat that lunch, please fill out the forms regardless. Other aspects of school funding are based on the number of students who qualified for subsidized lunches. If the student has special dietary needs, complaints or compliments, use the forms on the OUSD site (links below).

Peralta Salad Bar Facts

Food (produce) at the salad bar is provided through a special program and OUSD. To keep this program going, we must keep it properly staffed with volunteers every day.

  • The Peralta salad bar usually launches about 2 weeks after school starts.
  • The salad bar is included in whatever price the student pays for his/her meal.
  • The salad bar is simply another fruit and vegetable option. One day there may be a hot vegetable like green beans, or a fruit like a whole apple or nectarine, as part of the regular school meal, or studens can choose instead a bowl of salad from the salad bar.
  • Students who bring their own lunch can buy just a bowl of salad from the salad bar for $1.00.
  • In general, second helpings are not allowed due to food safety issues.
  • Is it organic? Not in general but some items may be. One goal of the OUSD wellness policy that was adopted in 2007 is to source organic food and drink items (in both salad bars and hot lunches) whenever financially feasible. Unfortunately, the current federal reimbursable meal rate currently makes organics the exception rather than the rule.
  • What kind of lettuce is used in the salad bar? Romaine and spinach.
  • What other kind of stuff (ingredients and dressings) are offered at the salad bar? A variety of seasonal produce: broccoli, tomatoes,  jicama with lime and chili powder as well as proteins (cheese, grilled chicken, etc.), fruits, and a variety of dressings.

Peralta kids LOVE the salad bar! Please encourage them to try it, and to practice sorting their recycling, compost and garbage after eating. You’ll be surprised how much they are learning about this at Peralta!

If you have more questions specific to the salad bar — or if you want to get worked into the salad bar volunteer schedule — please contact the Peralta parent Salad Bar Coordinator directly (see Volunteer Roster on this site). You will need to get a simple, free TB test so you can get started helping out. The salad bar simply can not be made available on days when there are not enough volunteers. It’s fun and you don’t need any qualifications- just enjoy being around kids who love their salad bar!

OUSD posts monthly school lunch menus here. However, the actual menu often varies from the published menu, so make sure your child knows they may be getting something different than what is listed.

Near the bottom of the OUSD web page, there is a link to a menu comment card you can fill out if you have suggestions or compliments. There is also a link to download a “request for special meals medical statement.”

Healthy Ideas

The district’s Wellness Policy calls for all food at school, including food served at classroom parties, fundraisers and after-school events to follow healthy guidelines. While there is currently no formal enforcement of this policy, it is important that parents and caregivers adhere to common-sense principles of healthy diet when providing food for school events or nutrition break snacks.

Here are some suggestions for healthier foods to bring:

  • Beverages: water, juice spritzers, low-fat or nonfat milk (no soda allowed)
  • Fresh or dried fruit
  • Low-fat fruit muffins (e.g., apple-raisin; pumpkin)
  • Vegetable trays with low-fat dip
  • Whole-grain crackers with cheese or peanut butter
  • Pasta & veggie salad
  • Fruit & yogurt smoothies
  • Quesadillas or bean burritos with salsa
  • Trail/cereal mix (without candy)
  • Grilled chicken or steak strips over brown rice
  • Granola bars or Energy bars (low sugar)
  • Wraps with turkey, spinach, low-fat cheese
  • Pita with hummus dip or low-fat spreads or dressings