Rethinking School Lunch Oakland Feasibility Study

A roadmap for comprehensive reform of nutrition services.


What would comprehensive reform of a school district’s nutrition services in order to overcome systemic injustice and improve student health and academic performance look like?

The Center for Ecoliteracy provides a roadmap in a feasibility study completed for the Oakland (California) Unified School District.

Rethinking School Lunch Oakland Feasibility Study cover

The Rethinking School Lunch Oakland Feasibility Study, by a team of experts consultants commissioned by the Center, is based on CEL’s Rethinking School Lunch planning framework, a whole-systems approach developed over more than 15 years of work on school food issues.

The study was inspired by Oakland Superintendent Tony Smith’s belief that "School food reform is not separate from school reform; it’s part of the basic work we have to do in order to correct systemic justice, pursue equity, and give our children the best future possible."

The study produced findings, recommendations, timetables, and estimated expenses in ten interrelated dimensions of school food service operations: facilities, finances, food and health, wellness policy, teaching and learning, the dining experience, procurement, waste management, professional development, and marketing and communications.

Download the 27-page executive summary of the study pdf [6.3mb]

The Rethinking School Lunch Oakland Feasibility Study was funded by the TomKat Charitable Trust with the S.D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation.