Students Take the Driver’s Seat to Get on Track to Healthy Eating


April 20, 2015

Contact: Tammy Dodderidge, communications manager, (913) 279-2225

Students don’t always get revved up about healthy eating. But putting them in the driver’s seat can make a big difference when it comes to getting them on the right track. That’s why the Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools (KCKPS) hosts Taste of 500.

Taste of 500 is an annual food tasting fair that allows students, grades 2-11, to sample food items from a number of food service brokers and then provide feedback on the taste and quality. This year’s event will take place Wednesday, April 22 from 1:30 to 4 p.m. in the F.L. Schlagle High School cafeteria. This year’s theme is “On Track to Healthy Eating” which lends itself to a number of fun and interactive “pit stops” where students can learn about healthy food choices and healthy lifestyles. They will include:

  • Under the Hood: Students will try to guess different fruits and vegetables by touch.
  • Time Trials: This will be an exercise booth.
  • Fan Information: Dietitians will be at this booth to talk with students and provide them with materials about healthy eating.
  • Winner’s Photo: This will be a photo booth for students.
  • Get a Tune-Up: School nurses will be at this booth to talk with students about their health.

KCKPS is one of the largest food service providers in Wyandotte County, serving approximately 13,000 breakfasts and 16,000 lunches daily. Approximately, 900 daily snacks and 750 supper meals also feed students to keep them healthy and ready to learn.

So what are the most popular breakfast and lunch items currently being served? For breakfast it’s:

  • Pancake on a Stick
  • Chicken Biscuit.

Favorite lunch items include:

  • Chicken Nuggets
  • Pizza
  • General Tso’s Chicken and Rice
  • Breakfast for Lunch: French Toast Sticks with Sausage and Tater Tots

At this year’s Taste of 500, the emphasis will be on the quality of the food items as well as the taste. Higher protein hot breakfast items also are being sought, according to Stacy Raith, operations manager for the KCKPS Nutritional Services Department. Some items available for sampling will include egg/cheese/turkey bacon burritos, bacon/egg/cheese toast, sausage burrito, better quality pizzas, and student acceptable snacks such as goldfish puffs, oven baked chips and white cheddar popcorn.

All food items presented will be evaluated using a simple scoring technique. Positive responses will be considered for upcoming school menus, or the after school snack program.

This will mark the district’s 18th year for the food tasting event.

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Melissa Fears • Communications Office
2010 N. 59th Street • Kansas City, KS 66104 • 913-279-2242