Collaboration Takes Center Stage During CA School Nutrition Association Conference


Collaboration Takes Center Stage During CA School Nutrition Association Conference

14, December 2017 11:20 AM

Dairy Council of CA staff were as busy as game show hosts making sure collaboration took center stage during the 2017 California School Nutrition Association Conference in Sacramento. In addition to sponsoring the SLM of CA Collaborative reception and awards, team members were on several panels, exhibited and even hosted Nutrition Activity Club (NAC) attendees. Here are some of the highlights:
Using the premise of a popular game show, Candice Sainz from Dairy Council of CA partnered with Heather Reed and Crystal Young of California Department of Education, Gail Gousha from Escondido Union School District, Barbara Lee from Livermore Valley Joint Unified, Robert Lewis from El Monte City School District and April Mackill of Plumas Lake Unified on a session designed to drive home the message that Smarter Lunchrooms Movement of CA strategies use low and no cost solutions to make the healthy choice the easy choice.

Playing to a packed house, these passionate professionals shared examples and tips, demonstrating that with Smarter Lunchrooms Movement principles and practices, the "Price is Right" when promoting school meals. As a valuable parting gift, session attendees went home with a hand out of SLM of CA materials, resources, tools and sources they could contact/order to bring SLM to their cafeterias. 

Phoebe Copp of Dairy Council of CA co-presented “The Smarter Lunchrooms Movement: Engaging Students in Your Cafeteria” with April Mackill and Barbara Lee to share best practices for implementing Smarter Lunchrooms movement concepts. Read more about their experiences as recipients of the California Department of Education Team Nutrition SLM of CA Grants in case studies for Cobblestone Elementary and Marilyn Avenue.   

Facilitated by Copp, a Technical Advising Professional, both districts presented ways they center their Smarter Lunchrooms implementation on student engagement. Their approaches use both “old school” person to person nutrition outreach and “new school” approaches like electronic menu boards and videos. Participants learned real life strategies to make positive changes to the cafeteria environment that promote healthy food choices. 

Shannan Young, RDN, SNS, Director of Food Systems and Access presented Dairy Council of CA's Top 10 Nutrition Trends for 2017 and how they impact the school foodservice environment. Additionally, Young presented on the growing impact that Millennials are having in the school nutrition environment, both as the fastest growing segment of parents of school aged children, and as new professionals in school foodservice. 

Finally, in an effort to foster and inspire the next generation of school nutrition professionals, Dairy Council of CA also hosted conference attendance and a special gathering for California NAC members. Over two dozen upper elementary and middle school students were able to visit the exhibit floor of the California School Nutrition Association conference and sample different school menu items, new products and more. A fun graffiti board activity allowed the NAC students a chance to chronicle their favorite items, in the hopes of seeing them on a school lunch or breakfast menu soon. 



Sara Floor, MA
Project Manager II, Communications and Food Access

Tags: Candice Sainz nutrition education nutrition trends Phoebe Copp school foodservice Shannan Young smarter lunchrooms movement of CA

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