Again, in response to a request, here is a rubric for eating in the cafeteria. Cafeterias tend to be large and noisy. The following rubric would be useful for kids on the autism spectrum as well as kids with ADHD and social skills weaknesses.
You’ll notice that that the rubric can be used to determine whether kids are getting foods they like to eat. Kids need adequate nutrition if they are to make it through a long school day. I have found that some kids need support in asking for food they want, rather than simply accepting the tray handed to them. Cafeteria workers are under time pressure; if a kid cannot easily be heard or make a quick decision, that child may not get what they want. Parents and teachers can help with this, whether it is practice in speaking clearly, holding up an index card, or checking the menu choices before arriving at school. Also, parents may need to know that their child is tossing the lunch prepared at home. I am sometimes surprised that parents don’t know their child HATES peanut butter sandwiches. If parents want to “train” a child to eat foods through their school lunch box, please think again. Kids get so tired and irritable on an empty stomach.
As I’ve noted before, don’t just send a rubric along with a student, hoping it will work. Each of the items must be discussed and rehearsed, while several of these will need role-playing.