Administrative Policy for Negative Lunch Account Balances

Goal of the Policy:

The goal of the policy is to follow state guidelines for a positive balance in the nutrition program.

The Westwood Nutrition program is a self-operating program. In order to maintain financial stability and equality of all lunch paying students, policies regarding lunch accounts have been adopted. The State of Iowa Bureau of Nutrition and Health Services recommends that negative balances should not be acceptable. The district’s auditing firm has noted multiple family lunch account balances with excessive deficit balances.


When a family’s account will become negative within five days our student management system will email the family twice in that week and a paper note will go home with elementary students. When the account is negative a phone call will be made to the primary caregiver of the child.

Insufficient Balances:

Individuals will not be allowed to charge into negative balance. Individuals with a negative balance of $10 or more will not be offered a hot breakfast/lunch. Alternative breakfast and lunch for students will comprise of three meal components being served that day. Payment for these items will be charged to the individual’s account at $0.50 for breakfast or $1.00 for lunch. Alternate meal will only be provided for five school days. Adults will not be given a meal.

Negative Balances:

Negative balances will be carried over to the following school year. These negative balances must be taken care of prior to the start of the school year as a part of the school registration process. Families with accounts in arrears will be asked to send a lunch from home until negative balances have been taken care of or a payment schedule arranged and adhered to.

Board Approved: October 17, 2018