Take Your Farmer to School… All the Cool Kids Are Doing It!
By now, most friends of Soft Star have heard about our Back-to-School Healthy Prize-Pack Giveaway, and we’re SO excited by all the responses! We love reliving your families’ cherished learning experiences with you, played-out in the classroom, on the playground, or around the dinner table. In fact, the recent push for improved food education and cafeteria offerings in American schools is what inspired this giveaway in the first place! We mentioned it briefly in the contest announcement, but some of you may be wondering…
What Is the Farm-to-School Movement?
The Farm to School movement is dedicated to increasing the proportion of locally grown and processed foods that comprise school meals, improving student nutrition and the economic health of the local farming community. The non-profit National Farm to School Network connects teachers and administrators with local food providers and nutrition education resources close-to-home. National, regional, and state-level leads and supporters have helped bring farm-to-school programs into over 40,000 schools since 2007. Currently, the NFSW is lobbying Congress to pass the Farm to School Act of 2015, the approval of which would triple national funding for Farm-to-School Programs and expand their services to better support the health and economy of schools and their surrounding communities.
Here in our home state of Oregon, 38 percent of public school foods are locally-sourced at present, and the state legislature recently approved a $4.5 million budget for Farm-to-School programs. This resolution quadrupled the program’s previous budget and is positioning Oregon at the forefront of the farm-to-school movement. Twenty percent of these funds are designated specifically for school garden programs, supporting on-site food production and education. Since Oregon schools already host an impressive 605 gardens, we can only imagine how the movement will blossom with this added boost!
For more information about Farm-to-School programs, visit:
- The National Farm to School Network
- Oregon Quadruples Farm to School Funding
- The Farm to School Revolution
Are you excited to see schools prioritizing good nutrition? Do you know of a school with a cool food education program? Please share!