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Kitchen Counter Conversations

May 2024-  Breakfast Program Expansion

April 2024- All About Soy 

Guest Speaker -  Linda Funk - Soyfoods Connection & North Dakota Soybean Council

Application for funds to serve a soy food on their menu

March 2024- Beans, Beans the Challenging Subgroup

Guest Speaker - Julie Garden-Robinson of NDSU Extension

February 2024- Records Retention

  • Please have your Production Record Book and Administrative Records Book readily available, as we will reference these during the webinar.   If you need any of the resources discussed, please contact our office at dpicnfd@nd.gov

January 2024-  Menu Writing with USDA Foods

December 2023- Identifying the Nutrition Facts Label

November 2023- Smart Snacks in Schools & Additional Food Sales

October 2023-  Sub-grant opportunities available through the Child Nutrition and Food Distribution Office.

September 2023- Farm-to-School Updates and Pre-K Meal Pattern Requirements

August 2023- Annual Cashiers Training

Emily Karel, North Dakota’s Team Nutrition Grant coordinator

  • Assist cashiers in understanding a reimbursable meal under the National School Lunch Program and National School Breakfast Program.
  • Skill-building activities for meal monitors to recognize reimbursable meals.

May 2023:  Wrap up to revisit what still needs doing and what is to come in SY24.

  • Paid Lunch Equity (PLE), Adult meal pricing, Ala Carte pricing & the Nonprogram Food Revenue Tool
  • HB1494: “Lunch Shaming” Bill – more guidance to come
  • HB1491/SB2294: Free Lunch for Working Poor Bill – Communicate with your point of sale company or build the new eligibility class into your Excel spreadsheets
  • Free/Reduced meal application has been reformatted to accommodate new eligibility class/Income Guidelines contain another table of numbers
  • End of the Year reminders: SNP renewal; Summer P-EBT; Triennial assessment of the Local Wellness Policy; Professional development hours
    • For the following resources please email dpicnfd@nd.gov 
      • Documents included in the resource packet
      • Free / Reduced-Price meal applications, household letters, and notification letter templates can be found under the SNP/Free-Reduced Information tab.
      • USDA Paid Lunch Equity tool – SY23-24 to help set student lunch pricing
      • NDDPI Adult Meal price spreadsheet to set adult meal prices within requirements
      • USDA Nonprogram Food Revenue tool – required to be completed each year if the school is selling more than just second milk and adult meals
      • USDA Sample Detailed NP tracking tool
      • NDDPI quick 5-day calculator
      • Triennial assessment
      • Professional Development log

April 2023: “The Power of Power Lunch”

with Lenora Stevenson, Student Information Specialist with Edu-Tech. Power Lunch is a module of the state student information software Power School.  Lenora walks through the reports available in Power Lunch and how to download the meal data to work with it in an Excel spreadsheet.

  • For more information about the module, contact Edu-Tech at https://www.edutech.nd.gov/  Use the “Support” drop-down menu to file a ‘Help ticket.’
  • The Institute of Child Nutrition has an interactive spreadsheet called “Key Performance Indicators for School Nutrition Success” to use the data that is gained from Power Lunch. Search for this spreadsheet on www.theicn.org.

March 2023: Summer Food Service Program Updates

February 2023: USDA Proposed Rule & Submitting a Public Comment

Assistant Director Lynelle Johnson covered most of the proposed revisions to child nutrition programs during the first 19 minutes of the webinar.  At minute 19:20, Amy Nelson, Child Nutrition Specialist encourages you to make comments on the proposed changes.  She shows you where to find the comment submission form and adds helpful hints on how to comment. The Question and Answer session was not recorded.

Resources for this session are:

Links to resources mentioned during the presentation:

Link to submit a Public Comment:


January 2023: Procuring School Food & Supplies for SY 24

This presentation goes through the basic types of procurement for your school food service.  We also talk with Lisa Truax on the ND Coop’s Direct to Manufacturer food bid, timeline, and what is next for schools who have opted into this procurement type.  For those who have not opted into the ND school food coop, we have templates for you to start your procurement plan with.  Remember all schools must have a procurement policy and code of conduct written for their staff – samples are provided. 

December 2022– USDA Foods

November 2022 – 7 CFR 210.8(a)(1): On-site Review.

An annual review of the lunch and breakfast programs must be completed each year by February 1 at districts that have more than one school site. USDA strongly encourages all schools to review the checklist for “program accountability and integrity.”

September 2022 - Annual Cashier Training

Includes training in Civil Rights compliance, Reimbursable meal identification and what is Offer vs Serve meal service

August 2022– Back in the Saddle Again with Free/Reduced Meal Applications

The federal school meal programs are returning to income eligibilities and meal pricing structures this year, so we want to remind you how families should fill the applications out and then how a school district will process them.

June 2022 – Hot Topics, Cool Ideas, and Nice pics from our Recap of NDSNA 2022.

  • Customer service was a key focus of this year’s state School Nutrition Association conference.  Find copies of all the resources from the convention at www.northdakotasna.com/conference  We also review the foodshow fare – new products for next year’s menus and new ways to prepare old favorites. Enjoy!

May 2022– Top Ways to Prepare for Next Year

April 2022– Meal Pricing - Student, Adult, and A la Carte with Tips and Tricks for keeping production costs inline

  •  Time 17:51 Table has an Error.  Lunch-Pricing School Total is "At least $0.82 on top of highest student paid price"

March 2022 – SCA, Procurement, USDA Updates & More

February 2022 – Planning for next year

January 2022:  Nonprogram Foods – do you know what they are and how to track them? 

November 2021:  A Focus on Food Allergies 

October 2021:  Administrative Reviews

May 2021: Getting Ready for Next Year – USDA Waivers and menu tips

April 22, 2022: USDA WAIVERS:  Webinar

April 20, 2021: Every Kid Healthy Celebrations

March 2021: Let’s talk about Grains on your menu–bring some popped popcorn with you!

February 2021: A Few of My Favorite Things – Kitchen tools to make your job easier

January 2021: CN Labels and Product Formulation Statements

December 2020: Recipes and Recipe Analysis Workbook

November 2020: Production Records


Resources for Kitchen Counter Conversations are available by contacting dpicndd@nd.gov

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Across The Desk

Training will be held quarterly on the 2nd Tuesday of the month at 2:00 p.m. Central Time 

April 9, 2024

Slide Deck

  • Summer Programs – SFSP and Summer EBT​
  • Direct Certification with Medicaid​
  • Continuation of ND Extended Eligibility Guidelines​ (State Free)
  • End-of-the-year reminders for kitchens – Inventory and Records Management​
  • Charging for second servings or extra meals & the Nonprogram Revenue Tool​
  • Upcoming Training and Events for school nutrition staff​
  • Procurement Requirements for Schools​
  • School Lunch Hero Day May 3

January 9, 2024

Slide Deck

  • Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Guidelines and Best Practices
  • After-School Snack Guidelines
  • Verification Summaries and Free/Reduced Numbers
  • Procurement updates for 2024-25

October 10, 2023

  • Verification Process and Verification Summary Report
  • State-Free Applications and Monthly Claims
  • New Community Eligibility Guidelines (CEP)
  • New Meal Charge Policy is required (HB 1494, Anti-Lunch Shaming)
  • Farm to School updates and Census
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Summer Food and SEBT

Summer Food 2024 and Summer EBT 2024

  • Summer Food Updates
  • Preliminary Summer EBT Information
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Farm to School 2024 Series

North Dakota Department of Public Instruction Farm to School Webinar Series 2024

This Farm to School webinar series is hosted by Amanda Olson, Farm to School Specialist in the Child Nutrition and Food Distribution office, along with featured speakers from NDDPI and the North Dakota Department of Agriculture. This is a 5-part series that focuses on various topics in Farm to School, including procurement, ND Local Foods Directory, Local Wellness Policy, grants, resources, and idea sharing. If you have any questions about Farm to School, please reach out to Amanda Olson, at dpicnfd@nd.gov


Session 1 Back to Basics Farm to School - 02/15/2024

Session 2 North Dakota Local Foods - 02/22/2024

Session 3 Farm to School Procurement- 02/29/2024

Session 4 Farm to School Brainstorm- 03/07/2024

Session 5 The Future of North Dakota Farm to School- 03/14/2024

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School Nutrition Newsletters

May 2024

April 2024

    **Please note the Back To School Workshop held on August 8 will be in Minot, NOT Mandan

March 2024

February 2024

January 2024

December 2023

November 2023

October 2023

September 2023

June/July 2023









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Enrollment Numbers by District
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Enrollment Numbers by Site
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Annual Reports

Please reach out to dpicnfd@nd.gov for assistance with your information needs.