Alternate Breakfast Models

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Hello and thank you for attending today’s
session on alternate breakfast models.
My name is Abbie McFerron and I am a Nutrition
Program Specialist for DESE.
Today we are going to learn about the different
types of breakfast programs offered and how
these programs can increase breakfast participation
and your financial position.
First before I get into the different breakfast
programs I would like to give you a few stats.
These stats are from the health department
back in 2017, so the numbers may have increased
since then.
In Missouri 50% of children enrolled in schools
are eligible for a free or reduced price meal.
50% equals out to about 464,166 kids total.
Missouri is made up of 115 counties.
Of those 115 counties 78 of them are at 50%
or more for free and reduced enrollment.
78 counties equals out to 68%.
So over half of our counties in Missouri are
receiving free or reduced benefits.
So I know most of us heard this growing up
“breakfast is the most important meal of
the day”.
I know I have heard it and I have said it
to my own kids.
In fact I still say it to them.
Here is why so many of us believe this: Kids
who eat breakfast miss less school, they attend
1.5 more days per year.
That might not sound like a lot but it adds
up fast.
Kids who eat breakfast do better in math.
They average 17.5 % higher on math test scores.
And kids who eat breakfast are more likely
to graduate.
In fact 20% are more likely to graduate high
In a perfect world there would be no road
blocks or barriers but unfortunately we do
not live in a perfect world so we do understand
that there are some barriers to a healthy
Some barriers that are keeping kids from a
healthy breakfast are:
They have a limited budget or limited access
to foods at home,
The parents work early morning hours and cannot
be there to fix them a healthy breakfast,
Those same kids that have parents that work
early in the morning might also have a hard
time getting to school.
Maybe they cannot find a ride or they do not
wake up in time to catch the bus, so now they
are late for school and miss breakfast not
only at home but at school too.
There are also those kids who don’t like
to eat early in the morning and then there
are some religions and cultural practices
of not eating breakfast.
So let’s get an understanding of the School
Breakfast Program.
The School Breakfast Program is a federally
assisted meal program operating in public,
non-profit private schools, and residential
child care institutions also known as RCCIs.
It started in 1966 as a pilot project, then
in 1975 it became a permanent entitlement
In 1970 only .5 million children participated
in the SBP and by 2016 it had risen to 14.57
How it works, is the LEAs that choose to participate
in the SBP must serve breakfast meals that
meet the federal nutrition requirements, and
offer free and reduced price breakfast to
all eligible children.
In exchange, the LEAs receive cash subsidies
from USDA for each reimbursable meal served.
Ok the Application Packet.
Every year we ask you to fill out the LEA
Application Packet and building applications,
then submit back to us.
When an LEA has chosen what breakfast program
they will be doing for that year, they must
go into the application packet and mark it
in there.
The LEA must check on building application
what type of breakfast is being served and
they must do this for each building.
I am going to show you step by step where
to find and enter this information.
First log into web applications on the Dese
Then click on Food and Nutrition Services.
Once you have clicked on Food and Nutrition
Services, it will bring you to this colorful
page of boxes.
On this page click on the first tab Applications.
Then click on Application Packet (2nd one
Now you are inside the application packet.
Here you want to scroll down until you see
in bold building applications.
Click just below that on School Nutrition
Now you are inside the building application.
You will need to scroll down to section B-
School Breakfast Program and choose which
ones apply on question B6.
You are able to pick more than one.
Not only
do we have barriers keeping our kids from
a healthy breakfast but the School Breakfast
Program also has some challenges.
Some of these challenges are:
School serve breakfast early in the morning
and some kids cannot make it during the breakfast
We also know that buses have their problems
especially at the very first of the school
year and they could run late and kids miss
There are also circumstances where a bus could
break down and the kids miss breakfast.
The last challenge with the SBP is kids who
eat breakfast at school can often be stigmatized
No worries.
We have the solution 3 breakfast models that
These models are Breakfast in the Classroom,
Grab & Go Breakfast, and Breakfast after the
Before I get into the 3 different breakfast
models, first let me discuss what a reimbursable
tray consists of for the School Breakfast
A tray must have 3 out of the 4 items and
one of those items must include a fruit and/or
You must also have the correct portion for
the age groups.
The meal components for a breakfast tray are
milk, grain (preferably whole grain), fruit,
juice, or vegetable, and a meat or ma.
Here I just wanted to show you the servings
for each age group for the Breakfast Meal
You can find this table on our Dese food and
nutrition services website, under the box
quick links, then meal pattern, meal pattern
again, then scroll down till you see Meal
Pattern Information in bold.
It is the 14th one down (Meal Pattern and
Dietary Specifications)
Breakfast in the Classroom
How does breakfast in the classroom work?
Just as the name implies.
Students eat breakfast in the classroom.
It can be either hot or cold, just whatever
works best for your LEA.
Little instructional time is lost, 10-15 at
the most.
In this time teachers can take attendance,
collect homework, deliver announcements, or
read to the class
Students are responsible for throwing away
all trash.
You can either have a separate trash can or
a separate trash bag just for the breakfast
Then you can leave trash bags/cans in hallway
or have a classroom representative return
trash bags/cans to cafeteria.
Breakfast in the classroom can be offered
4 different ways.
First students can stop by the cafeteria and
pick up their breakfast in grab “n” go
bags and go to class.
Next breakfast can be delivered via coolers,
insulated rolling bags, wagons, and/ or carts.
Third, a student representative can go to
the cafeteria, pick up the breakfast and take
back to class in a cart or wagon.
This option teaches and gives the students
a sense of responsibility, which they enjoy.
Last a school nutrition staff can serve breakfast
from mobile carts in hallways.
Of course this option can only work if you
have enough nutrition staff.
Just do what is best for your LEA and your
Why serve breakfast in the classroom?
The number one reason is more students eat
In fact 88% more students eat breakfast.
Second classrooms are familiar to students
and offer a comfortable environment for eating.
Some kids may not feel comfortable sitting
in a wide open space like a cafeteria or a
gym, so the classroom gives them a sense of
When kids feel more comfortable they will
want to eat.
Last it is convenient and can be prepared
quickly with few staff.
When does breakfast in the classroom work
It can only work if the students are in the
same room at the start of each school day.
If students have different class first at
the start of each day, it is really hard for
the nutrition staff to know how many kids
are eating what and it makes it harder on
staff to identify which students have food
Next, buses need to arrive before class begins.
This way the kids can be settled in their
room before the food arrives.
Also it keeps students out of the hallways
while the food is being transported.
Of course there will be those occasions where
the buses run late.
Teachers need to be supportive of breakfast
and realize its importance to learning.
I am sure you will not have too many problems
with teachers not being on board for BIC.
They want the students to learn as much as
If there is no space to serve breakfast.
Some LEA’s are really small and just don’t
have the room for a traditional breakfast.
If your cafeteria is not centrally located
or easily accessible.
If the cafeteria is not centrally located,
sometimes it is easier for the staff to transport
breakfast instead of the kids coming from
every direction.
When you have kids coming from every direction
it can cause confusion for the staff and trays
could be missed.
Last and this is very important, Have a plan
and include key stake holders in the planning
Also address any concerns that may come up.
Planning will increase your rate of success
and decrease your implementation time.
Point of Sale can be fairly simple with breakfast
in the classroom.
You can use a roster with each students’
name on it.
Then you check the student off after receiving
the meal.
This is an important step.
Names must be marked off after they have received
their reimbursable tray.
Last, it must be a complete meal, another
important step.
Now I am just giving you some tips to make
Breakfast in the classroom easier for you
and everybody else involved.
First, minimize mess by using pre-packaged
Utilize student helpers for: picking up food,
serving, and cleaning.
Besides the kids need to learn responsibility
and this is a great way.
Also kids like it when we trust them to be
Deliver clean up supplies with the food and
keep extra trash cans/bags in each class for
food only.
Make sure to include teachers in the planning
process and address any concerns they may
Last consult with the custodial staff.
You might want to give them warning that their
might be extra trash to pick up.
Next we are going to discuss grab n go breakfast
How does grab n go work?
Grab n go can be prepared very easily.
Breakfast are packaged in paper bags, boxes,
or trays and students pick up their breakfast
from the cafeteria and take it with them.
They can eat when and where they want as long
as it is within the school guidelines.
Breakfast can be served hot or cold.
This depends on how much staff you have and
whatever is easiest for you.
Grab n go breakfast is served first thing
in the morning, between classes, or at a mid-morning
It also can be served from service carts in
high traffic areas such as school entrance,
cafeteria, hallways, or near the gym.
Students are more likely to eat if it does
not interrupt with their morning schedule
of hanging out with friends.
So if you put the service cart where all the
students like to hang out then they are more
likely to grab breakfast along with their
This way they can eat and still socialize.
So not only are you increasing breakfast participation
but also increasing your wallet.
Last the food service staff stock and operate
the service carts.
I would like to mention that the service carts
do not need to be completely restocked each
You can just simply push the cart into a locked
room after breakfast and then the next day
just refill what needs to be.
Why serve a grab n go breakfast?
There are several reasons to serve grab n
go breakfast.
First the food service staff brings breakfast
to the students.
Like I mentioned earlier, bringing the food
to the students or allowing them to grab and
go eat where there want will increase participation
because they can still visit with their friends
and eat at the same time.
In fact 63% more students are likely to eat
breakfast with the grab n go option.
Grab and go also allows flexibility and choices
of what to eat and where they want to eat.
It is also convenient for food service staff
(prepackaged breakfast can take less time
to prepare).
Last it allows schools to serve breakfast
more quickly.
We have just a few more reasons why you should
serve a grab n go breakfast.
It takes the decision making out of the equation
for students.
For example breakfast vs. friends.
With grab n go the students can have both.
Grab n go allows schools to serve breakfast
fairly quickly.
The students come by the carts tell the staff
what they want and then they are off.
And last, which I have already mentioned,
you can stock cart at beginning of the week
and do not have to unstock each day.
When does grab n go breakfast work best?
This program works best when:
The cafeteria or gym is crowded or not available
for breakfast or if it isn’t centrally located
where students enter the building or hang
A large number of students have to eat in
a short amount of time.
It is not healthy for kids to eat real fast.
Buses arrive just before the start of class.
Once again we know buses will not always be
on time but for the most part they arrive
as scheduled.
Once again need to have teachers and custodial
staff on board and supportive of breakfast
and realize its importance to learning.
And last when the breakfast menu can easily
offer grab n go options.
If students rely on a la carte and convenience
foods from outside the school breakfast.
Now I am going to take just a few minutes
and talk about the breakfast carts that are
used for grab n go.
Carts are easily portable and the food they
goes on them must be easily portable and easy
to grab.
For best results put the carts in high traffic
areas, esp. where the students hang out
Most carts come with a POS (I am sure at extra
cost) so if you do not want to spend the extra
money for a POS, you can always use a roster.
Not sure on exact price for a cart but they
are a reasonable cost but also remember you
must have a portable milk cooler.
Last but not least, Breakfast after the bell.
How does breakfast after the bell work?
Just like the name implies, breakfast is served
after the bell.
It is also called Breakfast after first period
or Second Chance Breakfast.
It is usually served during morning break,
usually between 9:00 am and 10:00 am.
Just remember breakfast cannot overlap and
go into lunch time.
Meals are usually individually packaged in
grab n go bags and usually offered from mobile
carts or a table in high traffic areas.
Once again breakfast can be hot or cold, depends
on the LEA and what is easiest for them.
Last, students are responsible for discarding
their own trash.
Keep extra trash cans in areas where students
are and/or between classes.
This will help ensure trash is discarded properly.
Why serve breakfast after the bell?
Just like the other two models the main reason
is more kids participate in breakfast, esp
the middle and high school level.
In fact 70% more students eat when they have
the option of breakfast after the bell.
It is a great way to make sure students eat
breakfast who do not have time in the morning.
It is also a great way to let students eat
again, esp. if they had a really early breakfast.
Some kids have practice real early in the
morning and by the time school starts they
are hungry again.
This option lets them eat again, which in
return helps them concentrate and focus in
If there is not enough space to serve a traditional
breakfast and if students rely on vending
machines for snacks in the morning.
next two slides are just comparisons and differences
between the different breakfast models.
For Breakfast in the Classroom: It allows
students leadership roles by delivering food
to classrooms and returning cafeteria equipment
after breakfast.
It integrates breakfast with instructional
Promote the program to students and parents,
and also involve teachers and custodial staff
in the planning process.
For grab n go: You place portable carts, crates,
tables etc, in high trafficked areas.
Make sure you get feedback from your students
Must have some type of POS system for payment,
whether it be an actual POS or just a roster
Involve teachers and custodial staff in the
planning process
If you need more information you can go to
Consult No Kid Hungry GNG Tips Resource.
The last model is breakfast after the bell.
Use this model if students are not hungry
first thing the in the morning.
This is very popular and successful in the
middle and high school age.
Obtain POS
Execute this model via: Grab N Go or Breakfast
in the Classroom
Do what works best for you school
Last just some friendly reminders so whatever
model you choose it can be successful.
Pre-Implementation prep
Assemble a school breakfast team-involve anybody
that wants to be involved and that has a part
with this model
Identify and purchase needed equipment & supplies
Develop an implementation time
Connect with other schools
Promote our SBP
Provide training
Please feel free to use any of these resources
They are full of information and can be very
helpful when it comes to deciding which model
works best
for you.
You can also reach
out to me.

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