According to a number of references online, I should be able to use the following function to add the class, has-children, to menu items that have children under them:

function gtp_nav_menu_css_class( $css_class, $item ) {
    global $wpdb;
    $has_children = $wpdb->get_var("SELECT COUNT(meta_id) FROM wp_postmeta WHERE meta_key='_menu_item_menu_item_parent' AND meta_value='" . $item->ID . "'");
    if ($has_children > 0) {
        array_push($css_class, 'has-children');
    return $css_class;
add_filter( 'nav_menu_css_class', 'gtp_nav_menu_css_class', 10, 4 );

I am using wp_nav_menu() in my header.php. However, after adding this code to functions.php, I am not seeing the has-children class being added to any menu items (when in fact there are menu items that contain children). Does anybody know what may be the culprit?


  • I am using WP 3.4.1.
  • I am running a Multisite setup
  • Table prefix is 'wp_'
  • Via debug echo statements, I can see that the function is getting executed, but not inside the conditional statement.
  • what's your table prefix?
    – Milo
    Commented Jul 23, 2012 at 21:50
  • $table_prefix = 'wp_'; Commented Jul 23, 2012 at 21:50

1 Answer 1


You can't shouldn't hardcode table names into queries, especially with multisite. Swap $wpdb->postmeta for wp_postmeta and it'll likely work.

edit- technically you can, edited for clarity.


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