Select Schools Offering Vegan Lunch Options in California

At North Hollywood High School, students are finding they have a few extra options on the menu this semester.

ABC7 details how, as part of a Los Angeles Unified School District pilot program, North Hollywood High and several other area schools will be adding vegan food items to their school menus this fall.

North Hollywood High School Principal Ricardo Rosales explains how this initiative is to try and be more accommodating to their students and present a healthier alternative to traditional school food. "We're finding out there are students who are vegan who do not eat meat and this is just another way in which we're trying to make sure we're accommodating all our kiddos."

In addition to salads and fruit, there will also be many meat substitutes made from soy products available, as well as soy milk. Beans of all kinds will be especially prevalent on the menu, says North Hollywood High's Cafeteria Manager, Kathy Knight. "We're going to have a bean tamale. We're going to have a vegetarian chili that has different types of beans in it."

LAUSD schools have already offered vegetarian meals with their lunches and participate in the Meatless Monday initiative, but officials feel that it is now time to take a further step in accommodating their students' varied dietary needs. While it was a challenge to source animal-free food products for the second largest school district in the country, it will hopefully be worthwhile in providing the children with more options at lunch.

The program will officially begin on September 5th and continue into November 17th. During that time, students will be asked to provide feedback on the food options and tell the district what they would like to see more or less of after the program ends.

While time will tell how successful the program ends up being, the district is excited about the prospect of serving healthy and delicious vegan options at their schools. With more than 1.5 million meals served a year in LAUSD schools, it just got a lot easier to be a vegan in the school system.