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Superintendent responds to school lunch photos

St. Landry Parish School Board
Posted at 3:25 PM, Mar 01, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-01 16:25:23-05

Several viewers have reached out to KATC in the last day or so, sending us pictures of school lunches from St. Landry Parish schools.

They say they're concerned about what the children were given to eat - in some cases just a few items, which don't appear to provide something from all the food groups. None of the parents who contacted us directly would go on camera to talk about their concerns.

We contacted Superintendent Patrick Jenkins, and he tells us the photos are not telling the whole story.

For instance, one photo showed a serving of French fries, some tortilla chips and what appears to be a fruit cup. Jenkins said that's not all that was offered to the children that day.

Here's what he said was offered:

  • Nachos with Cheese Sauce
  • French Fries
  • Sliced Peaches / Apples / Oranges
  • Milk Choice
  • Corn

"I know sometimes children might not put every food group presented to them on their plate, making this photograph very deceiving," Jenkins tells us. "We are a Community Eligibility Provision [] (CEP) district. The Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) is a non-pricing meal service option for schools and school districts in low-income areas. CEP allows the nation’s highest poverty schools and districts to serve breakfast and lunch at no cost to all enrolled students without collecting household applications. In addition, we are currently operating under our summer feeding program. Students should take all items on the menu for that day, whether they consume it or not."

Jenkins said he believes the people who work in the parish's school cafeterias have done a good job providing meals to students under the restrictions created by the pandemic.

"If parents have any concerns regarding meals, they can contact their school's cafeteria manager or principal to try to resolve their concerns," Jenkins said.

If you want to see what is being served at your child's school, you can find a copy of the school meal on the St Landry Parish website at [] or breakfast and lunch menus [].