Nutrition Services

TDA Guidelines / Meal Policy

Texas Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Regulations

As a participant in the National School Lunch Program and the School Breakfast Program, Goose Creek CISD is required to follow TDA Food and Nutrition Standards. To learn more about these programs, nutritional requirements for participation, and more, visit Square Meals.
  • Smart Snacks

    What Are “Competitive Foods”?

    “Competitive Foods” refers to all food and beverages SOLD to students on school campus during the school day, other than meals reimbursable under government programs. Effective July 1, 2014, The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released a memorandum to inform State agencies and School Food Authorities (SFAs) that USDA no longer provide waivers once these rules went into effect.

  • Snack Smart, Snack Healthy

    The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act required the USDA to establish nutrition standards on all foods and beverages sold to students outside of the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program meals on the school campus during the school day. USDA’s interim final rule “Nutrition Standards for All Foods Sold in School,” was effective July 1, 2014. These science-based nutrition standards promote a healthy school environment and apply to all foods sold, such as:

    • A La Carte Cafeteria Sales
    • School Stores
    • Snack Bars
    • Vending Machines
    • Fundraisers
  • More on Fundraisers in Texas Schools

    TDA analyzed the potential impacts of USDA’s Competitive Rule requirements in light of Texas Laws and the Texas Public School Nutrition Policy. Schools may have unlimited fundraisers as long as the fundraisers adhere to the federal Competitive Rule (i.e. Smart Snacks) requirements. Food items that do not meet the Competitive Rule requirements must be sold outside of the school day. The following are additional examples of allowable fundraisers that may occur during the school day:

    • Any Non-Food Items
    • Any food items not meant for consumption on the school camps during the school day (e.g. cookie dough to be prepared at home).
    • Any food item sold after the end of the school day (e.g. 30 minutes after the end of instruction on campus). Food items sold in concession stands after the end of the school day (e.g. 30 minutes after the end of instruction on campus). Any food items that meet the federal Competitive Rule requirements.


    These rules DO NOT apply to food given to students for free or brought by the student for their own consumption.

  • Where do the standards apply?

    School Campus

    This means all areas of property under jurisdiction of the school that are ACCESSIBLE to students during the school day.


    When do the standards apply?

    School Day

    Defined as the period from the midnight before to 30 minutes after the end of the OFFICIAL school day. There are no current restrictions on sales during after school programs occurring 30 minutes after school day ends.

    What about school "Party Days"?

    Schools may still have Party Days, however there are some stipulations:

    1. All foods SOLD to students are subject to Smart Snack standards. These standards also apply to food items which are not provided by the scenarios outlined below: For example, if students are required to bring money for a pizza party, the pizza served would have to meet the Smart Snack nutrition standards. The Smart Snack standards also apply to fundraisers in which the item sold is consumable, such as candy bars. If the item is being SOLD during the school day and is likely to be consumed during the school day, it must meet the Smart Snack standards.
    2. The exception is for foods that are provided to students free of charge (without exchange of money/tokens/tickets/etc.) Smart Snacks only regulates foods which are SOLD, not given away. Foods that are brought to school by parents or students do not have to meet the Smart Snacks requirements. Parents may still bring treats for celebrations, however at Goose Creek CISD we request that they take into consideration students with allergies or special dietary needs.
  • Goose Creek CISD knows that sometimes families forget lunch money. We have a plan to ensure that students can receive a meal during times when the child's meal account is low or negative. The Emergency Meal Policy applies to all grade levels. The emergency meal policy applies to lunch meals only. All GCCISD students can eat breakfast without charge, regardless of free, reduced or paid meal status.


    The Nutrition Services Department wants to:

    • Feed all students.
    • Make sure that every student has a completed meal application on file. 
    • Ensure it is common knowledge that parents are responsible to pay for all lunches eaten until their student is approved for free and/or reduced price meals. 
    • Notify families whose students have unpaid meal charges through phone calls, letters and call-outs from the school staff and / or Nutrition Services campus staff.



    A student will be allowed to charge 10 emergency meals.

    • Phone calls will be made to parents through the school messenger system.
    • Once a student has charge 10 meals, then the student will receive a sandwich and juice only. 
    • Students will not be able to charge snack items while they have a negative meal account balance. 
  • GCCISD Local Wellness Policy

    Every school/LEA that participates in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and/or the School Breakfast Program (SBP) is required to establish a local school wellness policy.

    The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 (HHFKA) further strengthened this requirement in order to promote student health, prevent childhood obesity and provide transparency to the public on school wellness policy content and implementation. Per the HHFKA, local wellness policies (LWPs) are to include, at a minimum, the following:

    • Goals for nutrition promotion and education, physical activity and other school based activities that promote student wellness.
    • Nutrition guidelines for all foods available on each school campus during the school day.


USDA Non-Discrimination Statement

As participants in federally funded nutrition programs such as the National School Lunch Program and the School Breakfast Program, GCCISD is required to adhere to USDA non-discrimination standards.