Date of Award

Fall 2012

Degree Type

Professional Project

Degree Name

Master of Public Service


College of Professional Studies

First Advisor

Robert Pavlik


This research study examined the National School Lunch Program and local implementation of federal reform in public and private schools in Milwaukee County, Wisconsin. The survey participants were selected by the way of purposeful sampling; interviews were conducted over the telephone; and a 90-minute focus group was held. Major themes from the study consist of the need for well-balanced meals in schools, concern regarding childhood obesity, and barriers of local implementation of federal guidelines. Many advocates expressed their concern regarding the calorie restrictions, specifically to the 850 kcal maximum for physically active students. This study provides insight on how the most recent federal guidelines for school lunch programs have been implemented by Milwaukee area schools with the help of privatization and careful menu planning by employed dietitians.