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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
Frances N. O'Donnell, Coordinator
Saturday, October 1, 2005
Meals Served on the School Bus

Local Education Agencies (LEAs) participating in the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs should be aware that there is no federal or State regulation prohibiting students from having food or eating on the school bus.  This prohibition only applies to bus drivers.  The policy allowing or not allowing students to eat and drink on the bus is decided at the local level.

    Even though local school district policy may not allow students to eat on the bus, it may be in the best interest of the school food service director to meet with the school board to have exceptions made to this rule. For example, LEAs may benefit from providing bag breakfasts to students on the buses before school begins or provide bag lunches to vocational students and allow them to consume them on the bus traveling to the BOCES.  If you can persuade the district to adjust its policy on eating on the school bus to meet the needs of the students, very positive outcomes can be obtained.

    Keep in mind that whenever and wherever food is consumed, choking can occur.  If food is consumed on a moving bus, choking posters should be visible and persons other than the bus driver should know how to administer the Heimlich maneuver.  Lives could depend on it.  The choking poster is available through the Health Department.

    Any questions regarding this topic should be directed to Barbara St. Louis at (518) 474-3956.

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.