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UPDATE: Chartwells School Dining Services and Levittown Public Schools (NY) Improving on Wellness


July 9, 2012 - Levittown, NY

In their working partnership, Chartwells School Dining Services and Levittown Public Schools know the importance of learning and nutrition. With insight from Chartwells, the district continues to focus on increasing nutritious school meal offerings to students in their school dining centers. Levittown Schools have an enrollment of 7,625 in six elementary schools, two middle schools and two high schools.

Western Suffolk Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) recently met with District Chartwells Food Service Director Alan Levin, Assistant Superintendent for Business and Finance Mark Flower and Division Avenue High School Principal Dr. Francesco Ianni to review the District's lunch and breakfast programs. During a recent lunch tour at Division Avenue High School's cafeteria, Mr. Levin highlighted the twice-weekly salad bar, cafeteria food that is baked and not fried, selections of fresh fruit and a new yogurt smoothie station. He also showed nutrition charts that were displayed, which detail the fat, sugar, fiber, and other nutritional calculations in the lunch menu options. Students can review these charts to find make healthy selections.

"Since last school year, the quality of the foods offered and the District's lunch count has increased. On average, 125 more students eat daily in the cafeteria," Mr. Levin noted. It was determined that the increase in the number of students buying lunch is due to the improved menu items, more variety and the fact that student feedback was included in decisions concerning the menu. "The students feel empowered because we, Chartwells, were willing to listen to their requests, such as salad bars, yogurt parfaits, hummus and vegetable platters," said Mr. Levin. "We offered free samples in March to give students a taste of what was available and to promote the new menu items."

According to Assistant Superintendent Mark Flower, seniors say they prefer to stay on campus now, and, because of improvement in food selections on campus, this will result in an increase in the number of students who eat lunch at school in the next coming school year. Keeping students onsite saves time, promotes safety and ensures that the choices students make are more likely healthy complete meals.

About Chartwells School Dining Services
Chartwells, a division of Charlotte, NC-based Compass Group provides dining services for over 550 public school districts and private schools, comprising over 6,000 separate elementary, middle and high schools nationwide. For more information about Chartwells School Dining Services, visit www.eatlearnlive.com.

Ayde Lyons
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