Under the general supervision of the Director of Learning Support Services, the School Nutrition Programs Specialist provides expert consultation, specialized training and guidance to school districts and county office personnel related to the implementation and operation of all aspects of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) School Nutrition Programs. This is an 11 month position.
Individuals who serve as the School Nutrition Programs Specialist provide services in the office, as well as in various sites throughout the county, sometimes serving multiple sites in a single workday. Public speaking skills, group problem solving, the ability to communicate effectively in writing, the capacity to maintain personal demeanor during periods of peak workflow and perform efficiently within restricted time frames are critical factors for success in this position. It requires broad knowledge of, and experience with, nutrition in the K-12 setting and the ability to work effectively with staff, districts and the community. The position occasionally requires working after hours, weekends and holidays.
Supervision Received And Exercised
This position is under the general supervision of the Director of Learning Support Services.
Examples of Duties & Responsiblities
- Provide technical assistance related to the day-to-day operations of school meal programs via site visits, virtual meetings, phone and e-mail correspondence.
- Build rapport, and work in relationship with, local district personnel (superintendents, business officials, school nutrition staff, afterschool coordinators) and assist with staff development needs, interpretation of relevant laws and regulations, program application and implementation.
- Guide districts in the development of school nutrition program policies and procedures.
- Gather and disseminate relevant program information and updates to school administrators, business officials, school nutrition staff and afterschool coordinators.
- Provide ongoing training, mentoring and coaching on all areas of school nutrition program operations to new and current school nutrition personnel. Training formats include one-on-one, small group and workshops.
- Assist districts in preparing for federally mandated Administrative Reviews and Procurement Reviews to minimize risk of corrective action.
- Support districts with special projects, such as scratch cooking, local procurement, upgrading equipment and facilities, financial management and grant writing.
- Advise school districts on additional federal programs, such as At-Risk Afterschool Meals, Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program and USDA Foods.
- Coordinate activities with other HCOE departments to maximize district support.
- Assist with food or disaster assistance and planning during times of emergency.
- Provide guidance and support to HCOE school site staff on administrative aspects of school meal programs to ensure compliance.
- Coordinate all efforts for HCOE related to the preparation and completion of an Administrative Review or Procurement Review.
- Actively engage in professional development to maintain current in field and enhance leadership skills.
- Participate in appropriate local, state and national professional meetings.
- Perform other duties as assigned.
Qualifications (Employment Standards)
Education and Experience
- Bachelors or advance degree in nutrition, dietetics, education, business administration, or other related field AND a minimum of three years working with school nutrition programs. A current certification as a Registered Dietitian (R.D.) is preferred, but not required.
- School administrative practices, including budget development and management.
- Laws, codes, rules and regulations related to USDA sponsored School Nutrition Programs.
- USDA Child Nutrition Programs operated by schools, including the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), School Breakfast Program (SBP), Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP), At-Risk Afterschool Supper and Snack Programs and Summer Food Programs.
- Nutrient analysis software and menu planning principles for school-age children.
- Methods and procedures for the development, implementation and evaluation of effective training programs.
- Federal and state health and safety regulations as they apply to food preparation and services.
- Understand, interpret, apply and explain applicable laws, codes, policies and procedures related to school nutrition programs.
- Develop and maintain positive and cooperative working relationships, including having the ability to deal effectively with a wide variety of personalities and situations requiring diplomacy, friendliness, poise and firmness.
- Set priorities and evaluate progress.
- Effectively meet established deadlines and schedules.
- Prepare clear and complete proposals and reports.
- Prepare grant applications.
- Communicate effectively both orally and in writing.
- Analyze situations accurately and take appropriate action.
- Present educational content and provide training to small and large groups.
- Work effectively in the absence of supervision.
- Establish and maintain cooperative and effective working relationships with others.
- Travel occasionally for required meetings and conferences.
Working Conditions (Work Environment):
Work is performed in a busy, sometimes noisy, office environment. Positions in this classification typically work indoors and sit for long periods of time. The position requires daily oral communication in person and on the telephone, frequent use of email and messaging communication systems. Employee will need the ability to work in a collective and collaborative working environment in a shared office space.
- Must be fingerprinted and a satisfactory Department of Justice records check must be received by HCOE prior to employment.
- TB testing and/or risk assessment will be required upon employment.
- Must pass a pre-employment physical (if applicable).
- May be required to obtain first aid and CPR certificates within the first 6 to 12 months of employment.
- May be required to drive with or without students; some positions may require a California driver’s license, proof of insurance and possible participation in the DMV PUll Notice Program once employed.
PC Approved 8/8/2023