Special Meal AccommodationsSpecial Diet

MEAL SUBSTITUTIONS FOR MEDICAL OR SPECIAL DIETARY REASONS

USDA Regulation 7 CFR Part 15b requires substitutions or modifications in school meals for children whose disabilities restrict their diets. A child with a disability must be provided substitutions in foods when that need is supported by a signed statement from a licensed physician.

In Cases of Food Allergy

Generally, children with food allergies or intolerances do not have a disability as defined under either Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act or Part B of IDEA, and the school food service may, but is not required to, make food substitutions for them.  However, when in the licensed physician’s assessment, food allergies may result in severe, life-threatening (anaphylactic) reactions, the child’s condition would meet the definition of “disability”, and the substitutions prescribed by the licensed physician must be made.

School food service may make food substitutions, at their discretion, for individual children who do not have a disability, but who are medically certified as having a special medical or dietary need.  Such determinations are only made on a case-by-case basis.  This provision covers those children who have food intolerances or allergies, but do not have life-threatening reactions (anaphylactic reactions) when exposed to the food(s) to which they have problems.

Medical Statement for Children with Special Dietary Needs

Each special dietary request must be supported by a statement explaining the requested food substitution and must be signed by a recognized medical authority and the parent/guardian. The Medical Statement must include:

  • An identification of the medical or other special dietary condition which restricts the child’s diet;
  • The food or foods to be omitted from the child’s diet; and
  • The food or choice of foods to be substituted.

Items specifically listed on medical referral forms by a physician as a life threatening allergen will be noted in the students record and meal trays will be monitored so not to include identified food allergens. Due to the possibility of residual or cross contamination of allergens and non-allergens in manufacturing plants and the ability of manufacturers to omit small percentage ingredients in ingredient listings it is impossible to guarantee an allergen free environment.

Forms that must be completed and submitted to the Student Nutrition Services department to request a meal modification are available on this web page, the school's nurse and cafeteria cashier.

Download Forms: