Frequently Asked Questions – School Nutrition
Check out these frequently asked questions and their answers regarding the Ames CSD school nutrition program. Click the question to see the resulting answer. For any question outside of the ones listed here, please contact the Food Service Department.
Can my child(ren) eat for free this school year (2021-2022)?
Do I need to complete a meal application if all students are eating for free?
- Yes. You will want to complete a meal application if you feel you meet the income guidelines to qualify for free or reduce meal benefits. Meal benefits may apply towards other programs and fees (required school fees, busing, driver’s education, P-EBT cards).
- No. If you are directly certified automatically via the SNAP, FIP or specific Medicaid programs, you do not need to complete a meal application.
Do I need to complete an application if my child(ren) qualified for free or reduced status last year?
What makes up a reimbursable meal?
- Grain item – such as cereal or muffin.
- Protein item – such as yogurt, eggs, string cheese. o Fruit or vegetable – juice, canned, fresh.
- Fluid milk
At lunch, a meal consists of a minimum of three of the five “components”, and one of the three must be a full serving of a fruit or vegetable.
- Meat/meat alternate
- Fluid milk
Are a la carte items free?
Can my student get only milk if they bring a meal from home?
Can I join my child for breakfast or lunch?
How do I know what is being served on the menu?
Is my child allowed to have seconds?
- At the elementary schools, students are not allowed to have seconds of the entree. However, they are allowed unlimited fruits and vegetables.
- At the middle and high school, students are allowed to come back through the line to purchase more items from the various food stations.
My child doesn't eat meat. Are there meatless options?
My child has allergies or special dietary needs. What should I do?
How can I see what my student has eaten or how much money is on their lunch account?
How do I add money to my student's account?
- Online: You can add money to your student’s meal account online through the RevTrak Web Store, http://ames.revtrak.net. You should have received information about RevTrak during registration. If you have any questions pertaining to RevTrak, please contact Zac Sjoberg by email or call 515-268-6635.
- Check: Please make checks out to: Ames Community School District. Please write your student’s first and last name in the memo and place the check in a sealed envelope. Deposit envelopes are provided at each school in the main office. Always include your student’s first and last name, school, grade/teacher, and meal account number/student ID number (if known) on the envelope. Deposits may take 24-48 hours to be credited to your student’s account.
- Cash: Ames Community School District highly discourages the use of cash as a payment method. If you choose to use cash, please place the cash in a sealed envelope. Deposit envelopes are provided at each school in the main office. Always include your student’s first and last name, school, grade/teacher, and meal account number/student ID number (if known) on the envelope. Deposits may take 24-48 hours to be credited to your student’s meal account.
What happens if I forget to add money to my student's account?
If I have two or more students, can I write one check?
What if there is money in my student's account at the end of the year?
My student is graduating and/or we are moving out of the district. What will happen to the money in their meal account?
- You may request a refund. Please email the Food Service Department, to requesting a refund.
- Refund by check: Please included the following information in the email; your graduating student’s name, the name of the person to whom check will be made out, and the address to where the check will be sent.
- Direct deposit refund: Please request an EFT Authorization form be sent to you.
- You may request that the funds be transferred to another student’s meal account in your household. Please email the Food Service Department with the name of your graduating student and the name of the other student in your household.
- You may also donate the remaining balance to the Ames Community School District to apply towards students’ meal accounts with negative balances. Please email the Food Service Department your desire to donate.
Can I make a donation to the district for students who need help paying for their school meals?
- Online donations can be made via RevTrak, under the Lunch Hero Donation tab.
- Checks can be mailed to Ames Community School District, c/o Business Office, 2005 24th Street, Ames, IA 50010. Please make the check payable to Ames Community School District and note food service donation on the memo line. You should specify if you have any particular wishes for their donation, i.e. certain school or grade level. The donation will be recognized by the School Board and you will receive a gift letter for tax purposes. If you wish to remain anonymous, you should specify that in your note with their donation.