Dear President Trump and Secretary Perdue,
We write in strong opposition to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) “Simplifying Meal Service and Monitoring Requirements in the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs” proposed rule (85 FR 4094). This rule would jeopardize the progress schools have made to provide healthier food to vulnerable children and decrease the overall healthfulness of school meals.
We want our kids to eat healthier foods and have schools reinforce the healthy options we provide our children at home. It’s especially important that children who are facing hunger, be able to access fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and continue to learn healthy eating habits at school.
The rollback of nutritional standards for school meals threaten the progress we have made to ensure our children receive healthy meals at school. USDA’s own April 2019 study, found that thanks to the updated standards instituted by the Obama Administration, the nutritional quality of school meals has significantly increased. This study also shows that school meals have improved children’s diet and health, especially among students coming from food insecure and low-income households. We also fear that this rule change will negatively impact the health of our children, leading to an increase rate of childhood obesity and diabetes.
We ask that you immediately withdraw this proposed rule and instead dedicate your Administration to improving and strengthening the school meal nutrition standards.