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MIAMI (CBSMiami) — School bells across South Florida will soon be ringing and the food being served at Miami-Dade County Public Schools is going to be healthier and tasty too.
Broward County Public Schools start on Wednesday, August 15 and Miami-Dade Public School students head back to class a few days later, Monday August 20.
Friday, Miami-Dade Public Schools Food and Nutrition Department revealed what’s new on the menu for students heading back to class.
“Yes it is healthy, it is nutritious, but we should be serving foods that kids actually like to eat,” said Miami-Dade County Public Schools Superintendent Carvalho.
The superintendent was on hand to show off the new menu that will greet students which introduces the healthiest breakfast and lunch program they have ever had.
The new breakfast and lunch items include French toast, turkey bacon, vegan chili, cilantro-lime rice, antibiotic-free chicken tenders and breast filets, along with daily featured menu items including garden salads, sandwiches and assorted fresh fruit.
It is progress in a district where the majority of students already receive free or reduced lunch and where Carvalho says providing whole food, health-conscious meals is more important than ever.
“Recognizing that 75-percent of the kids in Miami-Dade live at or below the poverty level and rely on our breakfast and lunch, very often the meals, sadly, the kids eat in our schools may be the only meals they get daily,” said Carvalho.
The upgrade did come with a cost, but most of it is reimbursed by the federal government, according to Carvalho.
For kids short on time, they have a to-go option that abides by the same nutrition guidelines as the hot food and there is also food truck. It will serve up things like burgers and fries outside and will make the rounds at a different school every day except Fridays.
Breakfast, however, is still the most important meal of the day and it is free in all schools every school day.
“Eating breakfast early in the morning at provides for the physical development, emotional comfort and academic readiness we expect of our kids,” said Carvalho.