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Special Diets

Nutrition Services is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to students in need of dietary modifications that are supported by a medical statement. Staff and parents are encouraged to further explore the Nutrition Services Web page for resources for students with special dietary needs. These include a Medical Statement form, Nutrient and Allergy Information Tables, and other important information.

Topics on this page:


Medical Statement Forms

  • Download Medical Statement Form: English
  • Download Medical Statement Form: Spanish
  • A completed Medical Statement signed by a State Licensed Healthcare Professional (licensed physician, physician assistant, or nurse practitioner) is required to ensure the modified meal is reimbursable, and to ensure meal modifications meet nutrition standards that are medically appropriate for the student.
  • Return the completed form to the Nutrition Services Supervisor at your student's school cafeteria and allow 3-5 business days to initiate or change a Special Diet accommodation.
  • Medical Statements are in effect until the condition changes or the student leaves the district. If the condition changes, a revised Medical Statement form signed by a recognized medical authority must be submitted.
  • A completed Declining Special Diet Form can be returned to your student’s school cafeteria to remove a Special Diet accommodation that is no longer needed.
  • For students with disabilities who only require modifications in texture (such as chopped, ground, or pureed foods), a recognized medical authority's written instruction, indicating the appropriate food texture is recommended, but not required.

Special Modified Diets for Students


 

Diet Modifications for Religious or Personal Preferences, Including Vegetarian

The Nutrition Services Branch offers a variety of menu items daily through the District’s school cafeterias. The “offer versus serve” method of service allows students to make their food selections from the variety of foods offered. Meatless items and menu items containing pork are indicated on the menus. This can assist parents in advising their student in making food selections in the cafeteria. Meatless options are available throughout the month. Yogurt and housemade granola is available daily. Other options include cheese quesadilla, macaroni and cheese, cheese pizza, bean and cheese burrito, cheesy garlic bread, fruit & yogurt parfait, and peanut butter and jelly sandwich (select sites). Additionally, multiple fruit and vegetable offerings are available daily.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: My child has a dairy allergy. How do I arrange for dairy-free foods?
A: Please provide a Medical Statement signed by a State Licensed Healthcare Professional. In California, this is a licensed physician, physician assistant, or nurse practitioner. Soy Milk is available at all points of service for students with current Medical Statements identifying a milk substitute as medically necessary. Food items containing dairy, such as cheese, yogurt or ranch salad dressing can be omitted or appropriate substitutions made if the specific foods are identified on the medical statement. Water fountains are available at every school. Additionally, all food items that contain dairy products are identified on the Allergy Information Table.

Q: My child is lactose intolerant. What can Nutrition Services provide for my child?
A: Please provide a Medical Statement signed by a State Licensed Healthcare Professional identifying the foods to be omitted and the suggested substitutions. Soy Milk is available at all points of service for students with current Medical Statements identifying a milk substitute as medically necessary. Additional substitutions may be provided if deemed medically necessary and if listed on the Medical Statement by a medical professional. Water fountains are available at every school.

Q: My child is diabetic. What can be done to help keep the diabetes under control when he eats at school?
A: Nutrient information, including carbohydrate contents of menu items, is available on the Nutrient Information Table

Q: Our family is vegetarian. Are vegetarian lunches provided?
A: Meatless options are available during the week. Families following strict vegan regimes may need to provide some lunch items from home. See details above.

Q: My child is trying to lose weight. What options are available in the school cafeteria?
A: Menu portion sizes are standardized and menus are planned to provide the proper calorie and nutrient content for students within each grade range. If you want to adjust the calories your student selects, please refer to the calorie content of foods on the Nutrient Information Table.

Q: Where can I find nutrition information about menu items served in the school cafeteria?
A: Nutrition information (carbohydrate, calories, sodium, fiber, protein, fat) is available on the Nutrient Information Table. Generally, this information is accurate for the entire school year. Updates may be made periodically if menu items change.

Q: How long does it take to initiate or change a Special Diet?
A: Please allow 3-5 business days after you return a completed Medical Statement to your student's cafeteria to initiate, make changes, or remove Special Diet accommodations.

Q: My child has special dietary needs. How does Nutrition Services provide for them?
A: See details above on this page. For additional and more specific information, contact the Child Nutrition Specialist at (562) 427-7923.


Department Address
3333 Airport Way
Long Beach, CA 90806

Department Phone
Phone: (562) 427-7923