Fairfax County Public Schools
menus - now
Sign the Petition!
Join the coalition of parents, students, and community members in asking that FCPS serve healthier, balanced meals to all their students by signing the petition below.
Our children deserve to be served the healthiest possible meals at school.
And we know that Fairfax County Public Schools can do better.
Our children are eating too much meat and eggs, too many over-processed products, and not enough fruits and vegetables. This kind of imbalanced diet contributes to 678,000 deaths in the US annually and causes 1 in 3 Americans to live with a preventable chronic illness.
And because food environment is the primary influence of food choice - especially in schools where the options are pre-decided for students, for up to 2 meals a day - FCPS schools have a responsibility to create the healthiest possible menus for our children.
Nutrition science is clear. FCPS menus can and must make these common sense changes.
That's why our coalition of concerned parents, students, and community members is asking FCPS leadership to commit to reducing the amount of disease-promoting foods on their menus and replace them with the things we know make kids grow strong and healthy: fresh fruits and vegetables, lean plant proteins, and whole grains.
The leading causes of preventable disease, chronic illness, and premature death in the United States are all related to diet and poor nutrition—diseases like diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol, and even some cancers. Children born today have a shorter predicted life expectancy than their parents as a result of skyrocketing diet-related diseases. We must do better for our children—but the time to act is now.
Reduce the amount of foods high in cholesterol, saturated fats, and sodium like meat, egg, dairy, and other processed products
Eliminate processed meats like hot dogs, pepperoni pizza, sausage and egg sandwiches, chicken nuggets and fish sticks
Replace unhealthy menu items with foods rich in nutrients and high in fiber like fruits, vegetables, plant proteins, and whole grains
Diversify protein options to include plant sources by serving a warm, meatless entree at every meal
Fairfax County is already suffering the consequences of imbalanced menus.
The problem: FCPS menus don't reflect a balanced diet.
Less than 25% of FCPS students ate enough fruits and vegetables. 38% of Virginian adolescents ate less than 1 serving a day
By 2030, it's projected that the number of Virginians with diabetes will almost double and diet-linked cancers will almost triple
32.4% of Virginian adults have high blood pressure and by 2030 it's projected that will grow to 2.1 million adults
Diet-related diseases make up 6 of the top 10 causes of death in Virginia and kill up to 38,600 Virginians every year
Too many products high in cholesterol, saturated fats, and sodium like meats, eggs, and full fat dairy products
Too many ultra-processed foods made with disease-promoting refined grains and processed meats
Too few health-promoting fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and legumes
Imbalanced menus make it harder for students to get the nutrients they need to learn, grow, and excel.
Independent public health organization Balanced reviewed the healthfulness of FCPS menus and gave it a "D" grade—nearly a failing grade, with huge consequences for our children's health. In their analysis, Balanced found that the FCPS served:
health organizations recommend balanced food environments that promote increased consumption of fruits, vegetables, plant-proteins, and whole grains and reduced consumption of foods high in cholesterol, saturated fats, sodium, and excess calories.
Meet some of the people behind this effort for FCPS students' health.
As a parent of a baby and toddler in Fairfax, I looked up the lunch menus of my kids' future schools one day out of curiosity, and I was surprised to see so many unhealthy ingredients: monoglycerides, DATEM, sodium stearoyl lactylate, hydrogenated oil, high fructose corn syrup - and that was just in the peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Unhealthy processed foods are so harmful for our bodies, and our kids deserve better!