Special Meal Accommodations
MEAL SUBSTITUTIONS FOR MEDICAL OR SPECIAL DIETARY REASONS
USDA Regulation 7 CFR Part 15b requires substitutions or modifications in school meals for children whose disabilities restrict their diets. A child with a disability must be provided substitutions in foods when that need is supported by a signed statement from a licensed physician.
In Cases of Food Allergy
Generally, children with food allergies or intolerances do not have a disability as defined under either Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act or Part B of IDEA, and the school food service may, but is not required to, make food substitutions for them. However, when in the licensed physician’s assessment, food allergies may result in severe, life-threatening (anaphylactic) reactions, the child’s condition would meet the definition of “disability”, and the substitutions prescribed by the licensed physician must be made.
School food service may make food substitutions, at their discretion, for individual children who do not have a disability, but who are medically certified as having a special medical or dietary need. Such determinations are only made on a case-by-case basis. This provision covers those children who have food intolerances or allergies, but do not have life-threatening reactions (anaphylactic reactions) when exposed to the food(s) to which they have problems.
Food Allergy Information:
Our school district participates in a federally funded Child Nutrition Program to provide modified meals for students who have physical or mental disabilities or special dietary needs. This policy is in accordance with a federal mandate to include all students in the school nutrition programs (Child Nutrition and Food Distribution Division Management Bulletin No. 95-111 and No. 00-801)
Individual food items are not banned from our menus. We believe that banning foods would be counter-productive and not in the best interest of all students at a specific school site. Program regulations provide for a food substitution based on child-specific dietary needs. A concerted effort will be made to meet the nutritional needs and/or disability limitations of each student
If you have a food allergy and are requesting a food accommodation, these are the steps that need to be taken
- Notify the foodservice department of any food allergy, disability, or special dietary need
- Provide medical certification approved by a recognized medical authority (RMA) authorized to practice within the State of California.
- Update the medical certification on an annual basis.
- Participate in any meetings or discussions regarding the student’s meal plan.
- Notify the school of any changes relating to the food allergy or special dietary need.
Medical Statement for Children with Special Dietary Needs
If you are requesting a meal accommodation or substitution, please ask your physician to fill out and sign the form below. If you have any questions, contact the Food Service Director at 805-596-4064.