Code Section Group

Education Code - EDC


  ( Title 2 enacted by Stats. 1976, Ch. 1010. )


  ( Division 4 enacted by Stats. 1976, Ch. 1010. )

PART 27. PUPILS [48000 - 49703]

  ( Part 27 enacted by Stats. 1976, Ch. 1010. )

CHAPTER 9. Pupil and Personnel Health [49400 - 49590]

  ( Chapter 9 enacted by Stats. 1976, Ch. 1010. )

ARTICLE 10. Child Nutrition Act of 1974 [49530 - 49536]
  ( Article 10 enacted by Stats. 1976, Ch. 1010. )


(a) The Legislature finds that (1) the proper nutrition of children is a matter of highest state priority, and (2) there is a demonstrated relationship between the intake of food and good nutrition and the capacity of children to develop and learn, and (3) the teaching of the principles of good nutrition in schools is urgently needed to assist children at all income levels in developing the proper eating habits essential for lifelong good health and productivity.

(b) It is the policy of the State of California that no child shall go hungry at school or a child development program and that schools and child development programs conducted pursuant to Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 8200) of Part 6 of Division 1 of Title 1 have an obligation to provide for the nutritional needs and nutrition education of all pupils during the schoolday and all children receiving child development services.

(Enacted by Stats. 1976, Ch. 1010.)


As used in this article, “child nutrition entity” means any school district, county superintendent of schools, child development program operated pursuant to Chapter 2 (commencing with Section 8200) or Chapter 2.5 (commencing with Section 8400) of Part 6 of Division 1 of Title 1, local agency, private school, or parochial school, or any other agency which qualifies for federal aid under the federal school lunch program or the federal child nutrition program prescribed, respectively, by Chapter 13 (commencing with Section 1751) and Chapter 13A (commencing with Section 1771) of Title 42 of the United States Code.

(Amended by Stats. 1977, Ch. 1041.)


(a) Any child nutrition entity may apply to the department for all available federal and state funds so that a nutritionally adequate breakfast or lunch, or both, may be provided to pupils each schoolday at each school in the districts or maintained by the county superintendents of schools, or at private schools and parochial schools and to children receiving child development services. The state board shall adopt rules and regulations for the operation of lunch and breakfast programs in school districts. A child nutrition entity that receives state funds pursuant to this article, shall provide breakfasts and lunches in accordance with state and federal guidelines.

(b) A nutritionally adequate breakfast, for the purposes of this article, is one that qualifies for reimbursement under the most current meal pattern for the federal School Breakfast Program, as defined in Section 220.8 of Title 7 of the Code of Federal Regulations. A nutritionally adequate lunch for purposes of this article is one that qualifies for reimbursement under the most current meal pattern for the federal National School Lunch Program, as defined in Section 210.10 of Title 7 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

(c) State reimbursement for meals provided pursuant to this article shall be limited to meals provided to pupils who are within the relevant definitions and criteria in federal statutes and regulations that prescribe eligibility for free and reduced-price meals.

(Amended by Stats. 2019, Ch. 497, Sec. 70. (AB 991) Effective January 1, 2020.)


(a) The department shall develop and maintain nutrition guidelines for school lunches and breakfasts, and for all food and beverages sold on public school campuses.

(b) The nutrition guidelines for school lunches and breakfasts, pursuant to subdivision (a), shall be consistent with the requirements for nutritionally adequate breakfasts and nutritionally adequate lunches, as defined in subdivision (b) of Section 49531.

(Amended by Stats. 2018, Ch. 593, Sec. 4. (AB 3043) Effective January 1, 2019.)


(a) A Child Nutrition Advisory Council composed of 13 members shall be appointed by January 1, 1975, to recommend plans and guidelines for school and child care meal service and nutrition education programs. The members of the council shall be appointed by the Superintendent and shall include one member of the department, one school administrator, one school board member, one school food service director, one school food service supervisor or manager, one classroom teacher, one curriculum coordinator, one nutrition education specialist, one layperson, one child care food program sponsor, one secondary high school pupil, one representative from a recognized parent-teacher organization, and one qualified consultant specializing in nutrition, education, child care, or health and welfare.

(b) The members shall serve for a term of three years, except the pupil representative, who shall serve a one-year term. Council members shall serve without pay, but shall be reimbursed for authorized travel costs according to established department procedures.

(Amended by Stats. 2017, Ch. 15, Sec. 46. (AB 99) Effective June 27, 2017.)


(a) The Department of Education shall formulate the basic elements of nutrition education programs for child nutrition entities participating in programs established under this article. Such programs shall coordinate classroom instruction with the food service program and shall be of sufficient variety and flexibility to meet the needs of pupils in the total spectrum of education, including early childhood, elementary and secondary schools, special education classes and programs and child development programs.

(b) Nutrition education programs shall be maintained on a project approval basis. The State Board of Education shall establish rules and regulations for nutrition education projects. Such projects shall be approved by the State Board of Education upon recommendation of the Department of Education. County offices of education may apply for and receive funds on behalf of school districts under their jurisdiction in order to implement projects.

Projects may include, but need not be limited to, innovative ways to coordinate the school meal service program with the nutrition education program; development of community resources for purposes of nutrition education; instructional programs for teachers, parents, food service employees; and training and utilization of paraprofessionals to assist the instructional staff.

(Enacted by Stats. 1976, Ch. 1010.)


(a) The department shall, before July 1 of each year, prescribe an adjustment in the state meal contribution rates established pursuant to this section for the forthcoming fiscal year. The adjustments shall reflect the changes in the cost of operating a school breakfast and lunch program and shall be made commencing on July 1 of each year. The adjustment shall be the average of the separate indices of the “Food Away From Home Index” for Los Angeles and San Francisco as prepared by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics.

(b) In giving effect to the cost-of-living provisions of this section, the department shall use the same month for computation of the percentage change in the cost of living after July 1, 1975. The same month shall be used annually thereafter. The product of a percentage increase or decrease in the average index and the per meal reimbursement disbursement rate shall be adjusted by the amount of a cost-of-living change currently in effect pursuant to the provisions of this section.

(c) For the 1990–91 fiscal year to the 2012–13 fiscal year, inclusive, the cost-of-living adjustment shall be equal to the percentage change determined pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 42238.1, as that section read on January 1, 2013. Commencing with the 2013–14 fiscal year, the cost-of-living adjustment shall be equal to the percentage determined pursuant to paragraph (2) of subdivision (d) of Section 42238.02.

(Amended by Stats. 2013, Ch. 47, Sec. 93. (AB 97) Effective July 1, 2013.)

EDCEducation Code - EDC10