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Child Nutrition

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Students who eat nutritious, balanced diets are better prepared to learn and succeed in school. USD 383 Child Nutrition Department is made up of a dedicated team of nutrition and food service professionals that believe food safety is our priority. Ongoing training is provided through KSDE and all school site food service managers, leads, and primary production staff each have ten hours per year of continuing education on professional standards. The food service staff support learning by providing access to healthy, affordable meals to students in each school building. Meals are designed to provide variety and assist in developing life-long healthy eating habits. Good nutrition and learning go hand in hand!

Stephanie Smith

Contact Us:

Central Kitchen: 1112 Hayes Drive, Manhattan, KS 66502
785-587-2851 | 785-587-2853

Stephanie Smith – Director of Child Nutrition

Cornelia Thomas – Data Manager

Caleb Weddle – Chef/Culinary Trainer

Quick Links

Child Nutrition Resources

  • Wilmarys Cruz – Lee Kitchen Manager

    Rebeka Davis – Marlatt Kitchen Manager

    Dawn Dunlap – Woodrow Wilson Kitchen Manager

    Wanda Dunn – College Hill Kitchen Manager 

    Jeanette Huffman – Ogden Kitchen Manager

    Mary Ellen Keck – Oliver Brown Kitchen Manager

    Brandy Kile – Theodore Roosevelt Kitchen Manager

    Donna Minnich – Eugene Field Kitchen Manager

    Stacy Reeder – Eisenhower Kitchen Manager

    Kim Smith – Amanda Arnold Kitchen Manager

    Nicole Smith – Anthony Kitchen Manager

    Stephanie Smith – Director, Child Nutrition

    Lori Teel – MHS Kitchen Manager

    Connie Thomas – Data Manager

    Rosa Trevino – Bluemont Kitchen Manager

    Amber Walker – Northview Kitchen Manager

    Mary Walter – Frank Bergman Kitchen Manager

    Caleb Weddle – Chef/Culinary Trainer

  • You can apply from your phone/mobile device or a computer. We suggest you gather ahead of time the following information in order to apply:

    • Household members names
    • Student names
    • Income amounts from: wages, pensions, retirement, child support, alimony, public assistance
    • Last four digits of social security number of parent/guardian filling out the form (if you do not have a social security number there will be a box to mark no social security number).
    • If you would prefer a paper copy of the free/reduced application in order to apply please contact the child nutrition office or your student's school or print it off at home and bring it to your student’s school.



    If you only have students attending Bluemont Elementary, Lee Elementary, Northview Elementary, Ogden Elementary, or Woodrow Elementary then you do not fill out the free/reduced meal application. All students attending any of the listed schools will receive meals at no charge as these schools are participating in CEP (Community Eligibility Provision). If your students attend these schools and you want to see if you qualify for free or reduced fees you will want to fill out the household economic survey during online registration.

    Not sure which form to fill out? Please contact either the district business office or child nutrition for clarification.  If your student’s school was not mentioned above, you will want to fill out the free/reduced meal application to see if you qualify.  A new Free/Reduced meal applications must be completed each school year.


    All information shared is kept confidential.

    Printable Free/Reduced Meal Application – English – Spanish

  • Frequently Asked Questions 

    We hope this FAQ section clarifies any questions you may have about our child nutrition department. If you have additional inquiries or need further assistance, please don't hesitate to reach out to us. Your child's health and well-being are our top priorities, and we're here to support them on their journey to success! 

    • LINQ Connect FAQ
    • What meal options are available for my child?
      • Our child nutrition department offers a variety of nutritious and balanced meal options, including breakfast and lunch. Some schools may also have access to the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP) that provides fresh fruits and vegetables as additional meal options.
    • Unlike many other departments in the school, the Food Service Department is a financially self-supporting, non-profit entity and must generate its own revenue to cover its expenses.
      • School food service departments are the entities responsible for providing school meals. This involves purchasing food, paying staff salary and benefits, as well as repairing and replacing equipment. Contrary to popular belief, the food service department does not receive money from the school budget or the local government. Revenue for school meals comes from federal reimbursements that subsidize part of the meal costs, while student payments for full price and reduced price meals, adult meal payments, a la carte food and beverage sales, and make up the remainder of revenue needed to cover costs.
    • But doesn’t the federal government reimburse schools for the full price of the meals?
      • No. Federal reimbursements cover a portion of the cost of school meals, but not all. According to the School Nutrition Association USD383 average cost to prepare a school meal in 2016-17 school year was $3.61, yet the maximum federal reimbursement for a free lunch in SY 2016-17 was only $3.49. This means that food service departments lose money on every free meal that they serve.
    • Does that mean that the kids who pay for their meals subsidize the free meals?
      • Is that why meal prices are going up? Rising food and fuel prices nationwide and the higher cost of healthy foods such as fresh fruits and whole grains have put significant financial pressure on school food service departments. School districts nationwide are increasing their prices in order to cover their costs. All meal price increases must be approved by the local school board.
    • How can I view the school menu?
      • You can access the school menu through the districts website or the LINQ app. The menu is regularly updated to provide a glimpse of the delicious and healthy meals we serve each day. Add link
    • Are allergens labeled on the menu?
      • Yes, we take food allergies seriously. Allergens are clearly labeled on the menu to ensure the safety of students with dietary restrictions. If your child has specific allergens, please let us know, and we'll work together to provide appropriate meal options. Meal modification link to form
    • How do I set up a meal account for my child?
      • To set up a meal account for your child, you can access the online payment system with LINQ. Depositing funds into the account allows your child to enjoy meals conveniently without carrying cash daily. link
    • What payment methods are accepted?
      • We accept various payment methods, including online payments, checks, and cash. Online payments can be made through our secure payment portal on the school's website. There is a small convenience fee to make payments online
    • Can I apply for free or reduced-price meals?
      • Yes, we participate in federal meal programs that provide eligible families with the option to apply for free or reduced-price meals. Applications are available online or at the school office. Free/reduced applications can be submitted at any time throughout the school year, however applications are not retroactive.
    • How can I get involved in school nutrition activities?
      • We welcome parent involvement in our food service programs! You can participate in events like National School Lunch Week (NSLW) or School Breakfast Week (NSBW), provide feedback on menus, or volunteer in our nutrition education initiatives.- not sure if we are here yet to have parents volunteering, maybe put something about joining your student for lunch but check with your students school on any visitor policies
    • What safety measures are in place during meal service?
      • Our child nutrition team follows strict health and safety guidelines to ensure the well-being of our students. We maintain a clean and hygienic environment, adhere to food safety protocols, and monitor food temperatures regularly.
    • How can I offer feedback or suggestions regarding school meals?
      • We encourage parent feedback as it helps us continually improve our services. You can provide feedback through our website, email, or by contacting the child nutrition office directly.
  • USD 383 is committed to the safety and health of all students. Many of our students suffer from environmental, medical, or food-related allergies. We strive to provide a safe and healthy learning environment for students with allergies and reduce the likelihood of severe or potentially life-threatening allergic reactions. We want to ensure a rapid and effective response in the case of a severe or potentially life-threatening allergic reaction.  Requirements for meal modification requests through child nutrition vary depending on whether a student has a disability or whether it is a food allergy or intolerance that does not rise to the level of a disability. Child Nutrition will make meal modifications prescribed by a licensed physician or dietician when a student has a disability. (See the definition of disability on the meal modification form). When a student has a food allergy or intolerance, or other medical condition that does not rise to the level of a disability, child nutrition has the option of making a meal modification requested by a medical authority.

    Meal modifications will continue until the licensed physician or dietician or medical authority requests that it be changed or stopped (Form 19-C Discontinuation of School Meal Modifications Form).

    If you would like nutritional or allergy information on any of our items please contact us at 785-587-2851.

    Meal Modification Information – English

    Meal Modification Form – English

    Meal Modification Information – Spanish

    Meal Modification Form – Spanish

  • 2024-2025 Meal Prices

    Full Price Student Breakfast: $1.85

    Reduced student breakfast: $0.30

    Full Price Student Lunch: $3.50

    Reduced student lunch: $0.40

    Adult Breakfast: TBD

    Adult Lunch: TBD

    Meal Charging Policy

    1. We recognize that nutrition education is an essential component of the educational process and forming lifelong healthy behaviors. Our department presents nutrition education to students in kindergarten, second grade and fourth grade using fun and interactive curriculum.
    2. Northview and Ogden elementary qualify for the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program. This program provides all children in participating schools with a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables during the school day separate from breakfast and lunch at no cost to parents. The goal of the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable program is to:
      • Expand the variety of fruits and vegetables children experience  
      • Create healthier school environments by providing healthier  food choices
      • Increase children’s knowledge of nutritional value of fresh fruits and vegetables  
      • Increase children’s fruit and vegetable consumption
      • Make a difference in the children's diet to impact their present and future health

    Other Food Resources

    Women, Infants and Children (WIC) Nutrition Services

    Nourish Together

    Food Safety Information

  • In accordance with federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation), disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity.

    Program information may be made available in languages other than English. Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication to obtain program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language), should contact the responsible state or local agency that administers the program or USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TTY) or contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339.

    To file a program discrimination complaint, a Complainant should complete a Form AD-3027, USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form which can be obtained online, from any USDA office, by calling (866) 632-9992, or by writing a letter addressed to USDA. The letter must contain the complainant’s name, address, telephone number, and a written description of the alleged discriminatory action in sufficient detail to inform the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights (ASCR) about the nature and date of an alleged civil rights violation. The completed AD-3027 form or letter must be submitted to USDA by:

       (1)   mail
               U.S. Department of Agriculture
               Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
              1400 Independence Avenue, SW
               Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; or

       (2)   fax:
               (833) 256-1665 or (202) 690-7442; or

       (3)   email:

    This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

    USDA Nondiscrimination Statement - Spanish Translation

    De acuerdo con la ley federal de derechos civiles y las normas y políticas de derechos civiles del Departamento de Agricultura de los Estados Unidos (USDA), esta entidad está prohibida de discriminar por motivos de raza, color, origen nacional, sexo (incluyendo identidad de género y orientación sexual), discapacidad, edad, o represalia o retorsión por actividades previas de derechos civiles.

    La información sobre el programa puede estar disponible en otros idiomas que no sean el inglés. Las personas con discapacidades que requieren medios alternos de comunicación para obtener la información del programa (por ejemplo, Braille, letra grande, cinta de audio, lenguaje de señas americano (ASL), etc.) deben comunicarse con la agencia local o estatal responsable de administrar el programa o con el Centro TARGET del USDA al (202) 720-2600 (voz y TTY) o comuníquese con el USDA a través del Servicio Federal de Retransmisión al (800) 877-8339.

    Para presentar una queja por discriminación en el programa, el reclamante debe llenar un formulario AD-3027, formulario de queja por discriminación en el programa del USDA, el cual puede obtenerse en línea, de cualquier oficina de USDA, llamando al (866) 632-9992, o escribiendo una carta dirigida a USDA. La carta debe contener el nombre del demandante, la dirección, el número de teléfono y una descripción escrita de la acción discriminatoria alegada con suficiente detalle para informar al Subsecretario de Derechos Civiles (ASCR) sobre la naturaleza y fecha de una presunta violación de derechos civiles. El formulario AD-3027 completado o la carta debe presentarse a USDA por:

       (1)   correo:
               U.S. Department of Agriculture
               Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
               1400 Independence Avenue, SW
               Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; or

       (2)   fax:
               (833) 256-1665 o (202) 690-7442; or

       (3)   correo electrónico:

    Esta entidad es un proveedor que brinda igualdad de oportunidades.