Pinellas County, Florida -- Pinellas County Schools has received a perfect score on the 2012 School Lunch Report Card making it the first school district to receive a perfect score in the report card's 11-year history.
This year's report, issued by the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM), found that public school districts in Florida, Maryland, Tennessee and Nebraska rose above federal guidelines to serve healthy school lunches.
For the 2012 School Lunch Report Card, PCRM dietitians looked at elementary school meals at more than 20 districts that participate in the National School Lunch Program.
Pinellas County Schools prides itself on a varied menu five days a week that boasts many healthy low-fat vegetarian entries including vegetarian chili, pasta fagioli and a Southwest salad. The district also offers many fruits and vegetable sides at reduced prices.
The school district initiated programs including a "Featured Fruit or Vegetable of the Month" as well as district-wide school gardens. The district said more that $25,000 in grant funds helped 65 schools get equipment and supplies to sustain or start gardens.
Over the last 9 years, Pinellas County Schools has steadily increased its grade for the report card -- improving from a B (86) grade in 2003 to an A (98) in 2008.