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Seven schools get high marks for nutrition
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Seven elementary sites from Manteca Unified have earned the distinction as the first-ever recipients in California to claim the Gold Healthier US School Challenge.

Selected by the US Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service are Golden West, French Camp, Joseph Widmer, Joshua Cowell, Lathrop Annex, Stella Brockman and Lathrop School.

At 10 a.m. Wednesday, May 13, those sites will be honored at a special function at Lathrop School, with the list of dignitaries scheduled including USDA Deputy Under Secretary of Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services Dr. Janey Thornton, and state Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O’Connell.

 The federal agency developed the Healthier US School Challenge as a way to recognize schools that are creating healthy school environments by promoting good nutrition and physical activity.

Hundreds of sites from nearly 70 school districts throughout the country, depending on criteria, were provided with the opportunity to become certified as Bronze, Silver, Gold, or Gold of Distinction Schools.

Golden West, French Camp, Joseph Widmer, Joshua Cowell, Stella Brockman, Lathrop School and Lathrop Annex have demonstrated the initiative, creativity and resourcefulness to meet the challenge of providing nutritious meals by incorporating whole-grain products along with fresh fruits and vegetables.

The local sites, in fact, are proving to other California school that it’s possible to produce affordable, appealing and highly nutritious meals within the National School Lunch Program requirements and resources.

In these times of economic hardship, Manteca Unified is taking pride in providing nutritious meals to help students to be better prepared to meet the academic challenges.

Families, in turn, can rest assured that their children have access to healthy meals while at school.