Office of School Nutrition

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Detroit Public Schools Community District (DPSCD) knows that healthy eating helps to create healthy minds and bodies.  The Office of School Nutrition supports the educational development of our students by providing healthy breakfast and hot nutritional lunch to all students in grades K-12 at no charge.  On-site preparation ensures that meals are served hot in compliance with federal, state and local health department regulations.  All menus adhere to the guidelines of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The Office of School Nutrition serves more than 85,000 healthy meals daily.

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Our Programs

Breakfast in the Classroom / Universal Breakfast: Making sure students start the day ready to learn

Breakfast in the classroom

Detroit Public Schools Community District was the first school district in the country to make the free Universal Breakfast program available to all students.  Breakfast meals are served at the beginning of the school day either in the classroom or the lunchroom.  Numerous studies continue to show a direct correlation between eating breakfast and improved learning, and overall student performance.  In a 2010 report issued by the Food Research Action Committee, DPS ranked #2 in the nation for feeding the largest percentage of at-risk students.

Lunch Programs: Fresh, healthy food supports healthy minds and bodies

DPSCD provides free, freshly-cooked food items to all students in grades K-12 through our Heat & Serve Program, where meals are heated, served fresh and hot on-site to students in every school.  Our menus include a healthy array of fresh fruits and vegetables, whole wheat/whole grain breads and pizza, low fat and low sodium meat, meatless options, 100% fruit juices and 1% or fat-free milk.

Supper Programs: Ensuring students eat healthy after the last bell rings

DPSCD offers free, healthy “At-Risk, After-School Supper Programs” throughout the district in support of after-school tutorial and enrichment programs.

Summer Food Service Program:  Making sure students don’t go hungry during the summer months

This direct meal service program ensures City of Detroit youth are protected from hunger.

Farm to School: Providing more local, healthy foods for students and supporting local farmers

The Farm-to-School program is a collaboration between the Office of School Nutrition and the local farming community.  It is currently offered at every school.  Each month, local farmers are identified by the Office of School Nutrition to deliver fresh fruits and/or vegetables to each school in an effort to support Michigan-based farmers, as well as increase student exposure to fresh foods. The program delivers additional benefits:

  • Educational opportunities in the cafeteria
  • Classroom visits by local farmers
  • School garden opportunities







Detroit School Garden Collaborative

The Detroit School Garden Collaborative (DSGC) is a Farm to School initiative sponsored by the Detroit Public Schools Community District’s Office of School Nutrition, Office of Science, Facilities and Site Management.

Its mission is to establish an organizational structure which is effective, efficient, accountable, and supports school community garden maintenance and sustainability in support of healthy school food and academic achievement. This collaborative is possible, primarily, because of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010.

School Gardens:  Bringing fresh foods straight from the garden to the lunchroom table

Detroit Public Schools Community District, along with community partners, in 2012 kicked off an extensive Farm-to-School initiative that will create school gardens throughout the city.  This program expands teachers’ access to real-life laboratories to teach students about healthy eating, nutrition, and concepts around growing food while increasing schools’ access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Each site features raised beds constructed by students from Drew Transition Center.  This revolutionary project makes DPSCD one of few school districts nationally in which food services, site management, and curriculum are working collaboratively to ensure students are able to learn academic content in a real-world context related to gardens.  Exposing students to the science behind a productive garden, and encouraging science experiments in the garden, also seeks to advance students’ interest in science as a hobby or career.


Drew Farm

Drew Farm consists of a 2 acre farm and six 96-square-foot hoop houses which produces thousands of pounds of various greens, root vegetables and other produce.  The farm’s crop plan is incorporated into Detroit Public Schools Community District’s lunch menu.

Kettering Urban Agricultural Campus: A re-purposing of the former Kettering High School

The new agricultural campus creates a sustainable community development program that provides access to healthy foods, employment opportunities and quality of life enhancements for students, families and community stakeholders in Detroit.   That includes the development of eight high-tunnel hoop houses, a greenhouse installation, re-purposing of building space, and redevelopment of land.