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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 Lists, Allergy Information table and other important information.

Topics on this page:

The Medical Statement form is available below:

  • English
  • Spanish
  • The completion of the Medical Statement is required to ensure that the modified meal is reimbursable, and to ensure that any meal modifications meet nutrition standards that are medically appropriate for the child.
  • Medical Statements are in effect until the condition changes or until the student transfers, promotes to a new school, or leaves the district. If the condition changes, a revised Medical Statement form signed by a recognized medical authority must be submitted.
  • For children 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

  • Allergy Information Table (for peanuts, tree nuts, wheat, egg, soy, fish and milk)
  • Diabetic-Carbohydrate-controlled
  • Gluten-free for Celiac disease
  • Sodium-restricted
  • Resource: for Nutrient Information Lists, see Menus by grade level.


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 child in making food selections in the cafeteria. Meatless options are available throughout the month. Yogurt and housemade granola is available daily. Other options include grilled cheese sandwich, macaroni and cheese, cheese pizza, bean and cheese burrito, and peanut butter and jelly sandwich (select sites). Additionally, fruit and vegetable offerings are available daily.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: My child has a dairy allergy. How do I arrange for milk-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.  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. If the student has a milk or dairy allergy, a substitution will be offered. Parents are encouraged to provide students with an appropriate beverage alternative from home. 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: Juice is offered at breakfast to all grade levels, and Middle and High schools offers juice at both breakfast and lunch. There is no beverage substitution available for milk unless the student has a milk or dairy allergy. Parents are encouraged to provide students with an appropriate beverage alternative from home. 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 lists. These lists are organized by grade level: elementary, K-8, middle and high schools. Breakfast and lunch counts are listed under the appropriate group.

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 children within each grade range. If you want to adjust the calories your child selects, please refer to the calorie content of foods on the Nutrient Information list.

Q: Where can I find nutrition information about menu items served in the school cafeteria?
A: Nutrients (calories, protein, fat, carbohydrate sodium and fiber) are found on the Nutrient Information Lists available on the Menu & Nutrient Information page. These are organized by elementary, K-8, middle and high school. Breakfast and lunch items are separated among the grade groups listed above. Generally, this information is accurate for the entire school year. Updates will be made periodically.

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