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Office of P-20 Education Policy
Child Nutrition Program Administration
89 Washington Avenue, Room 375 EBA, Albany, NY 12234
Phone: (518) 473-8781 Fax: (518) 473-0018

School Food Service Directors/Managers
Paula Tyner-Doyle, Coordinator
Thursday, June 27, 2013
Changes regarding The School Breakfast Program (SBP)

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued the updated Questions and Answers and Offer Versus Serve (OVS) Guidance Manual on June 14, 2013. The following provides a brief overview of the changes outlined in those documents.

At breakfast, schools must offer all three required food components in at least the minimum required amounts. The components are: grains (with the optional meats/meat alternates); juice/fruit/vegetable; and milk.

Under OVS, a student must be offered at least four food items and must select at least three food items for a reimbursable meal. The previous guidance stated that a student could “decline only one food item even if more items are offered”. The menu planner may offer the grains component in one or more different food items.

The menu planner determines how to credit the food items. For example, the menu planner has the discretion to offer a 2 oz eq muffin as one or two food items. For Offer Versus Serve, if the menu planner offers this as one food item, the menu planner must offer three additional food items and the student must select any three food items for a reimbursable meal. If the menu planner offers the 2 oz eq muffin as two food items, the menu planner must offer 2 other food items and the student must select three food items for a reimbursable meal.

Examples: Muffin 2 oz eq. (offered as one food item) Toast 1 oz. eq. Fruit ½ cup Milk 8 fl oz Muffin 2 oz eq. (offered as two food items) Fruit ½ cup Milk 8 fl oz. *

*In both of these examples the menu planner is offering 4 food items and students must select at least three items in their minimum required amounts for a reimbursable meal for all grade levels. 

USDA Nondiscrimination Statement

In accordance with federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, this institution is prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex (including gender identity and sexual orientation), disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity.

Program information may be made available in languages other than English. Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication to obtain program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language), should contact the responsible state or local agency that administers the program or USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TTY) or contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339.

To file a program discrimination complaint, a Complainant should complete a Form AD-3027, USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form which can be obtained online at:, from any USDA office, by calling (866) 632-9992, or by writing a letter addressed to USDA. The letter must contain the complainant’s name, address, telephone number, and a written description of the alleged discriminatory action in sufficient detail to inform the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights (ASCR) about the nature and date of an alleged civil rights violation. The completed AD-3027 form or letter must be submitted to USDA by:

  1. mail:
    U.S. Department of Agriculture
    Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
    1400 Independence Avenue, SW
    Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; or
  2. fax:
    (833) 256-1665 or (202) 690-7442; or
  3. email:

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

Click here for Nondiscrimination Statement translations.