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Food and Nutrition Programs

School Meals Communication Plan for School Year 2023-2024

To:Child Nutrition Program Operators of the National School Lunch Program
From:Robert M. Leshin, Director
Office for Food and Nutrition Programs
Date:June 12, 2023

The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), Office for Food and Nutrition Programs (FNP) strives to communicate clearly and consistently with operators of Child Nutrition Programs to support program compliance and the sharing of best practices. In School Year 2023-2024 FNP is providing a variety of learning opportunities for School Food Authorities (SFAs) operating the National School Lunch Program, National School Breakfast Program and Afterschool Snack Program (School Meals). Please review the schedules below that will run from August 2023 to April 2024 and register for DESE's Tuesdays at 2 to stay current and connect with the school meal community.

For any questions related to these resources please contact Denise Courtney at 781-338-6467 or by email at . You will receive confirmation of your registration via email and will be prompted to save the events in an electronic calendar for easy access to login.

DESE's Tuesdays at 2

Monthly CadenceProductDescription
1st Tuesday Fueling the Commonwealth Newsletter Short articles summarizing current events including:
  • changes in federal/ state requirements;
  • current grant opportunities; and
  • notable dates.
Previous issues of the newsletter.
2nd Tuesday Town Hall for School Meal Programs FNP Leadership presents on current events and answers questions live from attendees.
  • Not available for later viewing
  • Slides available in the Document and reference library
3rd Tuesday Office Hours for School Meal Program Operators FNP topic experts are available to review current tasks on your to do list, answer questions specific to your SFA and provide a space for targeted group discussions in breakout rooms. Breakout rooms will be hosted by the USDA Foods team who will be able to discuss all spend options and NSLP Consultants, who will highlight the following content in group discussions:
  • August: NSLP Application Renewal
  • September: Meal Access and Eligibility
  • October: Verification
  • November: 742 Report
  • December: Crediting support for product without CN Labels
  • January: Accuclaim
  • February: Ordering USDA foods for 24/25
  • March: CEP & April Report
  • April: Building and sustaining a diverse wellness committee
4th Tuesday Hot Topics: Productive Conversations Fueling the Future of School Meals A place for directors and assistant directors to connect, problem solve and get inspired! These live peer to peer conversations will feature hot topics across school meals.

Last Updated: June 13, 2023

Contact Us

Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
135 Santilli Highway, Everett, MA 02149

Voice: (781) 338-3000
TTY: (800) 439-2370


Disclaimer: A reference in this website to any specific commercial products, processes, or services, or the use of any trade, firm, or corporation name is for the information and convenience of the public and does not constitute endorsement or recommendation by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.