75 schools to participate in fresh fruit, vegetable program
In the 2017-18 school year, 75 elementary schools in Delaware will receive funding to participate in the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program. Schools were awarded funding through a competitive application process. Each year Delaware receives a grant from USDA specifically allocated for the program. The Delaware Department of Education then must select schools to participate with priority given to schools with the highest free and reduced price enrollment.
The purpose of the program is to increase fresh fruit and fresh vegetable consumption in elementary schools that participate in the National School Lunch Program.
“This program can be an important catalyst for change in combating childhood obesity by increasing fresh fruit and vegetable consumption and encouraging healthier eating habits,” Secretary of Education Susan Bunting said.
Selected schools receive reimbursement for the cost of providing free fresh fruits and vegetables to students. These fresh fruits and vegetables must be served separately from the lunch or breakfast meal in one or more areas of the school during the official school day. Corresponding nutrition education is critical to the program’s success.
Within basic requirements, the program gives schools the flexibility to develop their own implementation plans and involve teachers and other school staff. Each school decides when, where and how to implement the program.
The Delaware Department of Education congratulates the schools that have been selected to participate in USDA’s Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program in Delaware for SY 17-18. Please see list of selected schools here.