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Working With Our Partners for a Healthier Future

Posted by Sam Kass, Assistant White House Chef in Food and Nutrition Initiatives
Feb 21, 2017
First Lady Michelle Obama joined Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack at Parklawn Elementary School to speak with faculty and parents about the United States Department of Agriculture’s new and improved nutrition standards for school lunches. An important accomplishment of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act that President Obama signed into law last year. Also, in In February 2010, First Lady Michelle Obama introduced “Let’s Move” incorporating the HealthierUS School Challenge into her campaign to promote a healthier generation of children. USDA is making the first major changes in school meals in over 15 years. The new standards encourage fruits and vegetables every day of the week, increasing offerings of whole grain-rich foods, offering only fat-free or low-fat milk and making sure kids are getting proper portion sizes at the Parklawn Elementary School Alexandria, Virginia, on Wednesday, January 25, 2012.  USDA Photo by Bob Nichols.
First Lady Michelle Obama joined Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack at Parklawn Elementary School to speak with faculty and parents about the United States Department of Agriculture’s new and improved nutrition standards for school lunches. USDA Photo by Bob Nichols.

Wednesday was a monumental day for kids, families, educators, administrators, food service workers and the advocates who have led the charge and worked hand in hand to deliver healthier, more nutritious food to our nation’s school children.

For the first time in over a decade the federal government has made significant changes to school meals that will provide kids across the country with the nourishment they will need to flourish in school and in life.

We know that we would not be here without the leadership and dedication of school nutrition professionals from across the nation.

School systems across the country are on the front lines of nutrition, education and health.  They are as diverse as America itself.  But they share an unwavering commitment to the young people they serve.  Implementing the new standards represents a mission that I know school food service professionals have embraced with passion and energy.

We know that healthy and nutritious school meals are just one important piece of the puzzle. It’s going to take all of us - parents, community leaders, business owners – to make sure our kids grow up healthy and strong.

Today First Lady Michelle Obama, Secretary Vilsack, and I want emphasize our gratitude for the educators, food service workers and advocates. Without their tireless efforts to improve school meals for all of our children this would not have been possible.