About Nutrition Services

  • Nutrition Services strives to support student learning by providing nutritious, well-balanced meals according to federal, state and district regulations while maintaining a self-supporting program.

    School meals are not only delicious and nutritious but are also a convenient, low-cost choice for our students. They are evaluated to ensure standards are met for 11 nutrients, including protein, vitamins, fiber, minerals, and calories. Breakfasts provide ¼ of the RDA’s for children, and lunches provide 1/3 of the RDA’s.


    Brief History of the USD 259 Food Service Program

    In the early years of the Wichita school system there were neighborhood schools and students went home for lunch. In 1946, the National School Lunch Act was passed by Congress, this Act provided commodities to school districts to use in the lunch program. A few inner city schools had food programs, mostly elementary schools. Junior and High schools had a' la carte programs where each item was priced and sold separately.

    In 1966, the National School Lunch Act was amended and the Child Nutrition Act was passed. This Act institutes and finances the School Breakfast Program and the free and reduced price meal program. A few Wichita schools participated in the free and reduced price meal program in 1966. The program was implemented in all Wichita schools during the 1971-1972 school year.

    Breakfast programs became popular in the late 80’s. By 1993, all Wichita schools had a breakfast program before the State legislature mandated the School Breakfast Program in Kansas.

    The Summer Food Service Program was started in Wichita during the summer of 1982. The Summer Food Service Program is federally funded and located in areas of need determined by free and reduced price meal data or the census tract. During the summer of 1982 and 1983, the City of Wichita sponsored the SFSP and USD#259 Food Services Department was a food vendor for the city. In 1984, the Wichita school district became the sponsor and the program is still active in 2010.

    The Child and Adult Care Food Program is a federally funded program for preschool children that provide nutritious meals and snacks for enrolled participants. The CACFP was established by section 17 of the National School Lunch Program enacted October 7, 1975. In the school year 2009-2010 this program serviced 60 classrooms in the Wichita Public Schools including Child Development Centers in the high schools, special education and regular education preschool students.


    Current USD 259 Food Service Programs


    Currently, Nutrition Services operates the following programs:

    • K-12 School Breakfast Program
    • K-12 School Lunch Program
    • Pre-kindergarten and Child Development Center Breakfast, Lunch and Snack
    • After School Care Snack Program
    • Summer Food Service Program
    • Special Diets Meals
    • Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program


    Average Daily Participation in School Meals Program (October 2012 data)

     Grades K-12:

    • Breakfast: 11,751 
    • Lunch: 32,277


    • Breakfast: 271 
    • Lunch 281
    • Snack 813

     After School Snack

    • Snack 472

     Summer Food Service Program (June, July, August 2012)

    • Breakfast 1,735 
    • Lunch 4,655 
    • Snack 332

    General Information 

    • Nutrition Services receives federal and state reimbursement for meals served.
    • As of October 2011, 74.3% of K-12 students enrolled in Wichita Public Schools qualify for free or reduced meals. A household can complete a Child Nutrition Benefits Application, available at any school or online (click here) to see if income and household size qualify students for free or reduced price meals.