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National Farm to School Network

News

This Week in Farm to School: 2/20/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, February 20, 2018
Every week, we share opportunities, action items and a selection of media stories that relate to the farm to school movement. To submit an item for consideration, send us an email. To be considered, content should be of national interest to the farm to school community. 

Grants & Funding 

1. Slow Food's Plant a Seed Campaign
Slow Food is excited to launch their Plant a Seed campaign for Spring 2018. This year, they are focusing on the Three Sisters — bean, corn and squash. They are able to offer free kits to the first 300 schools in need. Use promo code plantschoolfree if you would like a kit but cannot afford to pay. Once those run out, or if you have the budget to pay, you can use plantschoolhalf for a 50% discount. If you're not using this for a school garden, they ask that you pay full price. Order your school garden kit here


Webinars

1. State Of The Farm Bill: A Conversation With U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee Staff
February 22 // 2pm ET
The Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future is delighted to welcome U.S. Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forest Committee staff for a discussion about the state of the farm bill. Learn about the process for reauthorization, where things stand now, and what is to come for the farm bill. Hear about different bills being proposed to protect, reform, and add to the bill. Engage in a discussion with these insiders on the Hill about the state of SNAP, funding for local food programs, urban agriculture, and local food and healthy food access programs in the farm bill. Submit your questions for the presenters when you register or bring them with you to the conversation. Register here

2. Webinar: Farm to Institution New England (FINE) Metrics
February 27 // 11-12pm ET 
The New Hampshire Food Alliance is excited to share their newly created webinar series highlighting the importance of food systems work going on across New Hampshire, and in many cases the information presented proves valuable throughout the Northeastern region. The next webinar will feature work by Farm to Institution New England, and their research on the impact of the farm-to-institution sector, including barriers and recommendations about local food procurement and policy. Register here

3. Farm to School 101 & Funding Opportunities
February 28 // 5pm ET
USDA’s Office of Community Food Systems and the National Young Farmers Coalition invite you to attend “Farm to School 101 & Funding Opportunities.” This webinar will cover what USDA means by “farm to school”, the different ways to incorporate farm to school programs into your business plan, and how working with schools can impact and bring value to your operation.  Funding, including grant opportunities, will be covered. Register here.

4. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics Webinar: Engaging Farmers in Farm to School

March 1 // 2pm ET
One of the primary objectives of farm to school is to strengthening the connection that communities have with local food producers. Farmers and producers can also garner economic and social benefit through these strengthened relationships. Join this webinar to hear from farm to school practitioners and farmers about innovative yet practical approaches to engaging farmers in a wide variety of farm to school activities and learn how this engagement contributes to kids, communities, and farmers winning through farm to school. Register here.  

5. The Business of Farm to School
March 15 // 5pm ET
This webinar will cover the procurement (purchasing) rules that schools follow, describe questions and talking points to discuss when selling to and building relationships with schools, identify which products schools are looking for, and highlight the different Child Nutrition Programs (CNP’s) that provide these opportunities- hint- it’s not just school lunch! This webinar is coordinated by USDA Office of Community Food Systems and the National Young Farmers Coalition, and is geared towards farmers and producers selling to schools as a new market. Register here


Events
1. Registration Open for 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference
April 25-27, 2018 // Cincinnati, OH
Early Bird registration is now open for the 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference, which will take place in Cincinnati, Ohio, April 25-27, 2018. This biennial event, hosted by the National Farm to School Network, is the top national training and networking event for farm to cafeteria professionals working to improve community health, build economic opportunities for farmers and producers, and ensure long-term sustainability for local food efforts nationwide. Get the best rates on all ticket options by registering before March 9. Regular registration closes April 9. Learn more at www.farmtocafeteriaconference.org

2. School Nutrition Association’s Spring Industry Boot Camp
May 9-10 // National Harbor, MD
Are you an industry representative new to the multi-billion-dollar school nutrition market, or a seasoned veteran that wants to brush up on the intricacies of this complex segment? Designed specifically for industry partners, SNA's Spring Industry Boot Camp is a dynamic educational seminar that provides a thorough overview of today's school nutrition environment, including new information on procurement ethics, a tour of a local cafeteria and a two-hour panel discussion with major city school nutrition directors. Reserve your spot here

3. National Children & Youth Garden Symposium 2018
July 11-14 // Ithaca, NY
National Children & Youth Garden Symposium is excited to be back to Ithaca, New York this year. Join this gathering to network with like-minded teachers, garden designers, community leaders, program coordinators, and others involved with connecting kids to the natural world. Registration opens in April. Learn more here


Job Opportunities
1. Program and Production Coordinator, Montezuma School to Farm Project 
The Montezuma School to Farm Project (MSTFP) seeks a Program and Production Coordinator. MSTFP's mission is to unite local agricultural heritage with its growing future by engaging students at the crossroads of sustainable agriculture, resource conservation, health and economics through educational experiences in outdoor garden classes, on field trips and summer farm camps. Apply here by February 26 at 5pm MT. 

2. Chef Educator & Kitchen Manager, Greensboro Children’s Museum
Greensboro Children’s Museum seeks to hire a full-time, Edible Schoolyard Chef Educator & Kitchen Manager. This position is responsible for leading and coordinating all aspects of the cooking school at The Edible Schoolyard at GCM. Learn more here

3. RFS Programs Outreach Coordinator, Catholic Charities New Hampshire 
The NH Food Bank, a program of Catholic Charities NH, seeks a Recipe For Success (RFS) Program Outreach Coordinator. The RFS Program Coordinator position is responsible for coordination support of USDA Summer Food Service Sponsorship and Cooking Maters. Learn more here

4. Assistant Director of Education, Wright-Locke Farm Conservancy
Wright-Locke Farm Conservancy is hiring an Assistant Education Director to help develop, manage, and facilitate outdoor youth programs for its 2018 program season. The Assistant Education Director is a full-time position held March-October 2018. Learn more here

5. Farm Educator, Calypso Farm & Ecology Center

Calypso Farm & Ecology Center in Fairbanks, Alaska is seeking a full-time Farm Educator for April 3-September 29. Learn more here


Farm to School in the News
Nutrition and school gardens off to great start in Louisiana 
Students in pre-kindergarten, kindergarten and first grade at Bains Lower Elementary School have been gardening and learning about nutrition this year during their Play 30 physical activity time. (The Advocate)

Illinois students learn to cook healthy foods

Convinced she didn't like red bell pepper, the fourth-grader tried it on a slice of homemade pizza – and found out it tasted good. "Also I never thought I liked pepperoni," Brooklyn said. "Now I like it." Trying new foods, and learning how to cook healthy foods, is a goal of the after-school cooking class at St. Peter School that complements efforts to offer healthier foods in the school cafeteria. (Herald-Whig)

Indiana serves up first batch of school-raised beef to students

Cheeseburgers and beef tacos were on the menu this week at Maconaquah Middle School. But these weren’t just any cheeseburgers and tacos. They were made from a cow raised by students right outside the cafeteria doors. (Kokomo Tribune)

Read past editions of This Week for more funding opportunities, webinars and events, jobs, and ways to take action to support farm to school growth across the country.

This Week in Farm to School 2/13/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, February 13, 2018
Every week, we share opportunities, action items and a selection of media stories that relate to the farm to school movement. To submit an item for consideration, send us an email. To be considered, content should be of national interest to the farm to school community. 

Grants & Funding 

1. Frontera Farmer Foundation 2018 Grant 
The Frontera Farmer Foundation is committed to promoting small, sustainable Midwestern farms serving the Chicago area by providing them with capital development grants. These grants are for capital improvements of up to $12,000. Who Should Apply: small and mid-size farmers in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin that sell their food products to customers in the Chicago area at farmers markets and otherwise. Deadline to apply is March 11, 2018. Learn more and apply here.

2. Get Out and Grow School Garden Grant & Sweepstakes

The Get Out and Grow School Garden Sweepstakes is open to School Administrators and Foodservice Directors of K-12 schools. Schools can win up to $15,000 cash towards a school garden and a visit from a Team USA Athlete. Who Should Apply: State accredited K-12 school located in the 50 United States and D.C. Deadline is March 11, 2018. Learn more and apply here.


Webinars
1. NFSN WEBINAR Advancing Equity Through Farm to School
February 13 // 3-4pm ET
The National Farm to School Network (NFSN) recognizes racial and social equity as a central tenet of farm to school and has just released an organizational equity statement to publicly convey NFSN's commitment to advancing equity through farm to school and to share our equity journey. Join NFSN partners and staff on February 13 at 3pm ET to review the organization's equity statement and to hear from farm to school practitioners about their successes and challenges with advancing equity through farm to school. Register here

2. Farm to School 101 & Funding Opportunities

February 28 // 5pm ET
USDA’s Office of Community Food Systems and the National Young Farmers Coalition invite you to attend “Farm to School 101 & Funding Opportunities.” This webinar will cover what USDA means by “farm to school”, the different ways to incorporate farm to school programs into your business plan, and how working with schools can impact and bring value to your operation.  Funding, including grant opportunities, will be covered. Register here.

3. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics Webinar: Engaging Farmers in Farm to School

March 1 // 2pm ET
One of the primary objectives of farm to school is to strengthening the connection that communities have with local food producers. Farmers and producers can also garner economic and social benefit through these strengthened relationships. Join this webinar to hear from farm to school practitioners and farmers about innovative yet practical approaches to engaging farmers in a wide variety of farm to school activities and learn how this engagement contributes to kids, communities, and farmers winning through farm to school. Register here.  

4. The Business of Farm to School

March 15 // 5pm ET
This webinar will cover the procurement (purchasing) rules that schools follow, describe questions and talking points to discuss when selling to and building relationships with schools, identify which products schools are looking for, and highlight the different Child Nutrition Programs (CNP’s) that provide these opportunities- hint- it’s not just school lunch! This webinar is coordinated by USDA Office of Community Food Systems and the National Young Farmers Coalition, and is geared towards farmers and producers selling to schools as a new market. Register here


Events
1. Registration Open for 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference
April 25-27, 2018 // Cincinnati, OH
Early Bird registration is now open for the 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference, which will take place in Cincinnati, Ohio, April 25-27, 2018. This biennial event, hosted by the National Farm to School Network, is the top national training and networking event for farm to cafeteria professionals working to improve community health, build economic opportunities for farmers and producers, and ensure long-term sustainability for local food efforts nationwide. Get the best rates on all ticket options by registering before March 9. Regular registration closes April 9. Learn more at www.farmtocafeteriaconference.org

2. Save the Date and Call for Proposals: Iowa Farm to School Conference 2018

June 28-29 // Ankeny, Iowa
The Iowa Farm to School Coalition is pleased to invite individuals and groups to submit presentation proposals for the 2018 Iowa Farm to School Conference. The goal of the conference is to support and inspire those interested in or already implementing farm to school and farm to early care and education all around the state by covering a variety of topics. Please take this opportunity to share your expertise and creative ideas to help grow the farm to school movement in Iowa. Submission deadline is March 31st. Read more and see the proposal template here. Please submit your proposal via this Google Form: https://goo.gl/forms/jEXJQUD6LdFwjfoC3.


Research & Resources 
1. To Root Gardens in Schools, Create Curricular Connections
A recent study in the journal Health Behavior and Policy Review, by Dr. Katherine Gardner Burt and Tisch Food Center team members, concludes that supporting teachers to connect gardens with core academic subjects is critical to help school gardens grow deep roots in schools. Read more here

2. New Study: Making Nutrition Education Work in Schools

Findings from Dr. Kathleen Porter and Tisch Food Center team members give insight into the why-to and how-to of successfully adopting and sustaining nutrition education programs. To make it work, it is important to: 
  • Build motivation for nutrition education, for instance by emphasizing timely, tangible results, and framing it as fitting into a whole child approach to education 
  • Choose the right nutrition education program(s) based on a school’s needs and culture, involving a range of decision makers in the process 
  • Expand the school’s capacity for nutrition education, by identifying champions, creating routines and processes, and coordinating with existing school wellness efforts 
  • Sustain nutrition education by engaging a wide range of school community members and weaving nutrition education throughout the school’s curriculum. Read more here
3. Food Systems Leadership Network -  Community Food Systems Mentorship Program
The Wallace Center at Winrock International’s new Food Systems Leadership Network initiative includes a Community Food Systems Mentorship Program. This program seeks to provide emerging leaders with the opportunity to closely engage with more seasoned leaders as thought partners and coaches. The goal of this program is to create a space for experienced leaders to lend an ear to emerging leaders, and share their wisdom, knowledge, and expertise from years of practice in the good food movement. This Program will be offered twice annually, and will include 8 hours of one on one mentorship over a 3 month period for each mentee. The Spring application closes Feb. 15. Learn more here.  

Job Opportunities
1. Wisconsin Farm to School/Institution Director, The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection
The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection is hiring a full time Wisconsin Farm to School/Institution Director. This position has a statewide responsibility to stimulate the State’s economy by increasing the market share of Wisconsin food and agricultural products, and to foster new investment in agriculture and agricultural infrastructure in Wisconsin. The deadline to apply is Feb. 25. Learn more here.

2. Network Manager, Chicago Food Policy Action Council

Chicago Food Policy Action Council (CFPAC) seeks a Network Manager. The CFPAC Network Manager will support CFPAC’s priorities by working in coordination with CFPAC Board and staff members, organizations, vendors, suppliers, processors and producers as well as staff at City of Chicago Departments and Agencies, and national partners. Learn more here.

3. Communications Director, Practical Farmers of Iowa

Practical Farmers of Iowa is seeking a communications director to be based with the organization in Ames, IA. This is a new position, added to bring Practical Farmers’ communications to a higher capacity as the organization grows. Learn more here

4. Multiple Positions, Pie Ranch
Pie Ranch cultivates a healthy and just food system from seed to table through food education, farmer training, and regional partnerships. They are seeking to hire a Director of Finance and Administration, Chef Educator, and Programs and Events Manager

5. FoodCorps Service Members
FoodCorps service member applications are open for the 2018-2019 school year. The deadline to apply is March 15, 2018 at 6pm PST. Learn more here.  


Farm to School in the News
Oneida Nation harvests fish and produce from self-sustaining greenhouse
Oneida Nation High School students have partnered with Oneida veterans and community members to build an aquaponics operation that’s expected to grow 500 pounds of fish and hundreds of heads of lettuce for school meals every year. The program got off the ground in 2016 thanks to a Farm to School grant from the USDA. (FOX 11)
 
Community partnerships build school gardens in North Carolina
School gardens in Cabarrus County will soon be overflowing with delicious and nutritious vegetables and herbs thanks to community collaboration between Cabarrus Health Alliance, the Dole Food Company, Earth Fare, and the NC State Plants for Human Health Institute. (Independent Tribune

Elementary school program puts Missouri students in the kitchen
Most students at school cafeterias are usually not on the same side of the counter as cooks, but that's different after school at Callaway Hills Elementary School — because the students are the cooks. "I think it's pretty good because I can cook for my family and grandparents," North Elementary School fourth-grader Gavin Wilson said. (News Tribune)

New York, High school agriculture class working to build community garden
Before the end of 2018, there may be a community garden at the Fenner Fields complex on Fenner Street — a garden offering fruits and vegetables and maybe even a fiber crop from alpacas. The garden is a project created by students in the Cazenovia High School Agriculture Program, one they not only created but are funding through grants. (Eagle News Online)

Read past editions of This Week for more funding opportunities, webinars and events, jobs, and ways to take action to support farm to school growth across the country.

This Week in Farm to School: 2/06/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, February 06, 2018
Every week, we share opportunities, action items and a selection of media stories that relate to the farm to school movement. To submit an item for consideration, send us an email. To be considered, content should be of national interest to the farm to school community. 

Webinars

1. Edible Inquiries: Food Policy Research Connections Webinar
February 12 // 2:30pm ET
The Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future Food Policy Networks project is pleased to announce a new interactive webinar series, “Edible Inquiries: Food Policy Research Connections.” Join us for the inaugural webinar in which will feature four researchers who have recently published articles about evaluating the internal organization and community impacts of food policy groups. Register here.

2. NFSN WEBINAR Advancing Equity Through Farm to School
February 13 // 3-4pm ET
The National Farm to School Network (NFSN) recognizes racial and social equity as a central tenet of farm to school and has just released an organizational equity statement to publicly convey NFSN's commitment to advancing equity through farm to school and to share our equity journey. Join NFSN partners and staff on February 13 at 3pm ET to review the organization's equity statement and to hear from farm to school practitioners about their successes and challenges with advancing equity through farm to school. Register here

3. Beef to School Webinar
February 13 // 4:00pm EST
Join USDA's Office of Community Food Systems, Montana Beef to School Project, Montana State University, and school food service directors to learn about successful strategies for serving local beef in schools. The webinar will explore the Montana Beef to School Project’s findings and resources - including two new beef to school solicitation templates designed to help school districts purchase local beef! Participants will also hear from two school food service directors who will share their strategies and lessons learned for purchasing and serving local beef in schools. Register here


Events

1. Registration Open for 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference
April 25-27, 2018 // Cincinnati, OH
Early Bird registration is now open for the 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference, which will take place in Cincinnati, Ohio, April 25-27, 2018. This biennial event, hosted by the National Farm to School Network, is the top national training and networking event for farm to cafeteria professionals working to improve community health, build economic opportunities for farmers and producers, and ensure long-term sustainability for local food efforts nationwide. Get the best rates on all ticket options by registering before March 9. Scholarship applications to cover the cost of registration fees and/or selected short courses continue to be accepted until Feb. 12 at 8pm ET. Learn more at www.farmtocafeteriaconference.org

2. National CACFP Week is March 11-17 
CACFP Week (March 11-17, 2018) is a campaign aimed at raising awareness of how the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) works to combat hunger. The event is sponsored by the National CACFP Sponsors Association.

3. 2018 Michigan Good Food Summit - Save the Date!
October 22 // East Lansing, MI 
This October, the Michigan Good Food Summit will amplify under-represented voices across the food system as it continues advancing the Good Food Charter’s vision of equity, sustainability and a thriving economy for all of Michigan and its people. Whether you’re a food consumer, grower or buyer; line cook, server or chef; advocate, educator or policymaker – join the gathering in East Lansing to connect with others advancing good food and equity in Michigan! Learn more here.


Take Action
1. Food Policy Networks council directory update
The Food Policy Networks team is conducting a 2018 update of the food policy council directory and wants to know what your food policy council has been up to.  If you are listed as the main contact for an FPC or similar group in the United States or Canada, you should have received an email last week requesting that you fill out this year’s survey by February 16. If you represent a council that IS NOT CURRENTLY IN the directory or did not receive the email, please go here.  

2. The Better Selves Fellowship
Knoll Farm is hosting a fellowship for individuals working in the fields of social justice, human well being and conservation who can benefit from time to pursue a specific project, question or need. You have the goal; they provide you with inspiring accommodations, work space, healthy food and a supportive community environment to pursue your goal. This self-guided Fellowship is awarded to 40 people who can attend their choice of two summer sessions. Learn more here


Resources 
1. New Study Suggests America’s Nutritional Divide Goes Deeper Than Food Access
“A new study by economists at New York University, Stanford University, and the University of Chicago adds more evidence to the argument that food deserts alone are not to blame for the eating habits of people in low-income neighborhoods. The biggest difference in what we eat comes not from where we live per se, but from deeper, more fundamental differences in income and, especially, in education and nutritional knowledge, which shape our eating habits and in turn impact our health.” Read more here.

2. Land Justice - The Biggest Thing We Forget When Talking About Food Justice
“The food justice movement is one of the most promising political developments of the last generation. It has broadened and deepened environmentalism by knitting together concerns about economic inequality, labor rights, environmental health, and sustainable agriculture. But what often goes unmentioned in our discussions of food justice is that it all begins with land—who owns it, how they own it, and how it gets passed down from one generation to the next. This is something Savi Horne never forgets: Food justice requires land justice.” Read more here


Job Opportunities
1. Director of Programs, Georgia Organics
Working under the supervision of the Executive Director, the full-time Director of Programs will have strategic and operational responsibility for key program areas and serve on the senior management team. Learn more here.

2. Environment Program Officer, Walton Family Foundation
The Walton Family Foundation is seeking an individual to join the Washington, D.C., office as a program officer for the Mississippi River team.The foundation supports scaling up implementation of key agricultural practices through federal and state policy, as well as supply chain initiatives. Learn more here

3. Mid-Atlantic Outreach Coordinator, The Common Marker
The Common Market Mid-Atlantic seeks a Customer Outreach Coordinator (Philadelphia based). The Common Market’s mission is to strengthen regional farms while making the local bounty accessible to communities and the schools, universities, hospitals, restaurants, and retailers that serve them. Learn more here

4. Michigan Good Food Outreach Specialist, MSU Center for Regional Food Systems and MSU Product Center
The Michigan State University (MSU) Center for Regional Food Systems (CRFS) in partnership with the MSU Product Center is seeking an Academic Specialist to support outreach and business assistance efforts that will allow Michigan food production, processing and distribution businesses to build capacity and increase healthy food access in low-income urban and rural communities. Visit http://careers.msu.edu/ and look for job posting #485535 under faculty/academic staff to learn more. 

5. Director of Child Nutrition Programs, Oregon Department of Education
The Oregon Department of Education is recruiting for a permanent, full-time Director of Child Nutrition Programs. This position is located in Salem, Oregon, and is in Management Service. Learn more here

6. Executive Director, School Garden Project of Lane County
School Garden Project of Lance County seeks an energetic, creative, and inspired person to join their team as Executive Director. Apply by Feb. 23. Learn more here.  


Farm to School in the News
New Mexico bills propose produce in school meals
New Mexico’s House and Senate have introduced bills making an appropriation to provide New Mexico-grown fresh fruits and fresh vegetables for school meals. (SchoolNutrition.org)

Indiana farm able to grow during winter months
For Woodbury and his family, being able to grow produce year-round is an important part of their vision for the farm. Nature’s Gift Organics has focused its business on local consumers. Nature’s Gift has started partnering with Johnson County schools as well, ensuring that students have fresh, healthy fruits and vegetables in the cafeteria. This farm to school program is part of a larger movement looking more closely at where the food we eat comes from. (Daily Journal)

Rhode Island elementary school to create garden
The students at Narragansett Elementary School are set to discover a world of growing and planting with the rollout of a school garden in the spring. As part of the University of Rhode Island’s Cooperative Extension School Garden Initiative (SGI), a plan which seeks to set up gardens in voluntary schools to expose students to the benefits of such spaces, the new project will serve as a platform for hands-on, STEAM-based (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics) learning and align itself with curriculum requirements. (Narragansett Times)

School Food Focus and FoodCorps to merge

FoodCorps has announced it will bring the work of School Food Focus into its existing operations connecting kids to healthy food in schools. This move boosts FoodCorps’ ability to support schools across the country in procuring more local, nutritious foods for their cafeterias, providing kids with access to healthier school meals.. (FoodCorps)


Read 
past editions of This Week for more funding opportunities, webinars and events, jobs, and ways to take action to support farm to school growth across the country.

This Week in Farm to School: 1/30/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, January 30, 2018
Every week, we share opportunities, action items and a selection of media stories that relate to the farm to school movement. To submit an item for consideration, send us an email. To be considered, content should be of national interest to the farm to school community. 

Grants & Funding

1. Get Schools Cooking
Chef Ann Foundation has opened applications for Get Schools Cooking, a comprehensive three-year program that includes on-site assessment, strategic planning, and continued technical support for school districts transitioning to scratch-cooked operations. Learn more and apply today.

2. Center for Disease Control Grant
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently announced the availability of fiscal year 2018 funds to implement initiatives to improve student health and academic achievement through nutrition, physical activity, and the management of chronic conditions in schools. This grant is available to state education agencies (SEAs). Deadline: March 5, 2018. Learn more here


Webinars
1. Selecting, Installing, and Managing School Garden Bed Systems
January 30 // 4-5 PM ET
The National School Garden Network is presenting this webinar focused on choosing the best garden bed system for your school garden program. When you are working with multiple school garden sites, the number of variables to consider increases and using standardized bed systems with all of your schools can provide both benefits and challenges. In this webinar, we will hear from SGSOs who have developed  standard garden bed packages and find out what has worked for them and how they source their materials. Register here

2. Anybody can be an advocate: Measuring your council's readiness to work on policy
January 31 // 1:30 - 2:45 pm EST
The Food Policy Networks project is offering a webinar on the Get it Toolgether: Assessing Your Food Council's Ability to Do Policy Work toolkit. Adapted from the Alliance for Justice’s Advocacy Capacity Tool (ACT), the toolkit is designed to help food policy councils (or similar coalitions of diverse stakeholders) assess their capacity to do policy work. It provides them with appropriate resources to increase their knowledge of the policy process and improve their advocacy skills. Join us for a conversation with the toolkit developers to learn about how the toolkit can be used to advance your council’s policy efforts. Register here.

3. Empowered Eaters: A Road Map for Stronger Nutrition Education Policies

January 31 // 3-4 PM ET
The Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior is presenting this webinar. With such a pressing need today for great nutrition education, alongside accessible and affordable healthy food, how are federal, state, and local governments responding? To answer this, the Tisch Food Center just launched a series of “Empowered Eaters” reports. This webinar details the landscape of public policy and investment in nutrition education, using New York as a case study. The reports provide a road map to strengthen the complex public systems that currently support nutrition education. SNEB Members attend webinars free as a benefit of membership. Non-member cost is $25. Register here

4. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics Webinar: Farm to School and Food Waste 

February 1 // 2-3 PM ET
Farm to school initiatives across the country are changing the way students and community members view and consume fresh, local foods and interact with their local food community. In many places, that change includes reducing food waste. From food banks to composting to sharing tables, join the National Farm to School Network's February Trending topics webinar to learn about best practices, initiatives, and resources to reduce food waste through farm to school. Register here

5. NFSN WEBINAR Advancing Equity Through Farm to School
February 13 // 3-4pm ET
The National Farm to School Network (NFSN) recognizes racial and social equity as a central tenet of farm to school and has just released an organizational equity statement to publicly convey NFSN's commitment to advancing equity through farm to school and to share our equity journey. Join NFSN partners and staff on February 13 at 3pm ET to review the organization's equity statement and to hear from farm to school practitioners about their successes and challenges with advancing equity through farm to school. Register here

6. Beef to School Webinar
February 13 // 4:00pm EST
Join USDA's Office of Community Food Systems, Montana Beef to School Project, Montana State University, and school food service directors to learn about successful strategies for serving local beef in schools. The webinar will explore the Montana Beef to School Project’s findings and resources - including two new beef to school solicitation templates designed to help school districts purchase local beef! Participants will also hear from two school food service directors who will share their strategies and lessons learned for purchasing and serving local beef in schools. Register here


Events
1. Registration Open for 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference
April 25-27, 2018 // Cincinnati, OH
Early Bird registration is now open for the 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference, which will take place in Cincinnati, Ohio, April 25-27, 2018. This biennial event, hosted by the National Farm to School Network, is the top national training and networking event for farm to cafeteria professionals working to improve community health, build economic opportunities for farmers and producers, and ensure long-term sustainability for local food efforts nationwide. Get the best rates on all ticket options by registering before March 9. Scholarship applications to cover the cost of registration fees and/or selected short courses continue to be accepted until Feb. 12 at 8pm ET. Learn more at www.farmtocafeteriaconference.org

2. 41st Annual National Food Policy Conference 
March 28-29 // Washington, DC
Coordinated by the Consumer Federation of America, the National Food Policy Conference is a unique collaboration among consumer advocates, the food industry and government, and a key national gathering for anyone interested in agriculture, food and nutrition policy. Learn more here.

3. 2018-19 Northeast Farm to School Institute 
June 26-28, 2018 // Shelburne, VT
The Northeast Farm to School Institute is a unique year-long professional learning opportunity for twelve school teams from New England and New York. Whether you're a long-time Farm to School advocate or looking to begin integrating food, farm, and nutrition programs into your school community, you're invited to form a team and apply. Learn more and apply


Resources
1. Equity in Farm to School
As a network of farm to school stakeholders and partners in all 50 states, Washington, D.C. and U.S. Territories, the National Farm to School Network has the unique opportunity to work alongside communities to address inequities in the food system. We also hold significant collective potential to advance racial and social equity as a central tenet to organizational programming, partnerships and policies, which enables the accomplishment of our vision and strengthening of the farm to school movement. We invite you to learn about our commitment and join us in making farm to school a reality for every community across our country. 

2. FNS Releases First Mobile App with Food Buying Guide

USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) has announced its first ever mobile application, putting critical information at the fingertips of food service professionals and making it easier for them to serve wholesome, nutritious, and tasty meals through FNS’s child nutrition programs. “The Food Buying Guide" Mobile App mobile app is available to the public and can be an immediate resource to over 280,000 program operators responsible for USDA’s National School Lunch Program, School Breakfast Program, Child and Adult Care Food Program, and Summer Food Service Program as well as the countless food industry representatives working with these programs. 

3. Happy Multicultural Children's Book Day!

January 27 was Multicultural Children's Book Day. To celebration, the Food Trust's Ready Set Grow program shared this outstanding multicultural collection of farm to ECE books. A great collection for reading any time of year!


Policy News

1. House Forms Bipartisan Nutrition Group 
The Food is Medicine Working Group was formally launched in the House of Representatives last week, and is focused on emphasizing the link between nutrition programs and health outcomes. The group is part of the House Hunger Caucus and is led by Reps. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.), Lynn Jenkins (R-Kan.), Chellie Pingree (D-Maine) and Roger Marshall (R-Kan.).

2. Update on H.R. 3738, “The Healthy Breakfasts Help Kids Learn Act” 
H.R. 3738, or “The Healthy Breakfast Help Kids Learn Act of 2017,” was introduced on September 12, 2017 and now has 31 legislators signed on as cosponsors of the bill. 


Farm to School in the News

Massachusetts schools encourage healthy eating
District Wellness Director Ryan Sherman said the McGovern School - which serves the town’s preschool through first-grade students - will have a new garden this year. In addition to tying in to the school’s science curriculum, the plan for the garden is to encourage students and teachers to eat more fresh produce, he said. “If students are involved in the production of healthy foods, they’re more likely to try them,” he said, noting the importance of establishing healthy habits at an early age. (Milford Daily News)

Oregon students going ‘green’

The grossest job is probably, “digging through the compost and peeling the stickers off banana skins,” said student Jayden Dewitt.“’Tis not for the fainthearted,” chimed in classmate Quinn Kelley. Eighteen middle school students in teacher Garron Lamoreau’s leadership class are working to achieve “zero waste” lunches and other environmental goals at Butte Creek to make it the only certified Oregon Green School in the Silver Falls School District. (Statesman Journal)

Arizona school harvests and sells crop of winter veggies
“We teach the business end of agriculture and agribusiness as well as the things the students need to know to grow a garden,” said CGMS teacher Michael Cruz. (PinalCenteral)

Read past editions of This Week for more funding opportunities, webinars and events, jobs, and ways to take action to support farm to school growth across the country.

This Week in Farm to School: 1/23/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, January 23, 2018
Every week, we share opportunities, action items and a selection of media stories that relate to the farm to school movement. To submit an item for consideration, send us an email. To be considered, content should be of national interest to the farm to school community. 

Grants & Funding

1. Center for Disease Control Grant
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently announced the availability of fiscal year 2018 funds to implement initiatives to improve student health and academic achievement through nutrition, physical activity, and the management of chronic conditions in schools. This grant is available to state education agencies (SEAs). Deadline: March 5, 2018.

2. 2018 Project Orange Thumb Grant Application
The Fiskars Project Orange Thumb Grant Program will grant 30 recipients $3,500 in gift cards and tools to help support their goals of neighborhood beautification and horticulture education. The garden initiative must be for a not-for-profit or 501(c)(3) organization within North America that has not received a Project Orange Thumb grant in the past. The Project Orange Thumb team looks for organizations committed to the long-term success of gardens that will promote healthy and sustainable food sources, community collaboration and neighborhood beautification. Learn more here


Webinars & Events
1. Using the new Economic Impact Calculator to Assess your Project: A Discussion on the Connections to the USDA AMS Toolkit and Framing Used to Develop the Calculator
January 24 // 2-3 PM ET
During this webinar oriented toward local food practitioners and project managers, presenters will highlight the use of two key resources for conducting economic impact studies of food system initiatives. The first is a new online calculator to estimate economic impacts of representative food system. Through a collaborative companion project, this calculator follows the best practices for project framing and assessment laid out in the USDA’s “The Economics of Local Food Systems: A Toolkit to Guide Community Discussions, Assessments and Choices.”  The webinar will include partners who intend to use this new tool, and preview another webinar that will explore some of the applied research that can help us better understand how to further refine our economic impact estimates and add more value to the calculator’s results. Register here.

2. #CommunityFood: It Takes a Network

January 24 // 3:30 PM ET
The National Food Food Network invites you to join this webinar where they will launch the  Food Systems Leadership Network, a new national Community of Practice dedicated to supporting non-profit community-based organizations working on food systems change.  In this webinar, we will introduce the Food Systems Leadership Network, highlight its unique components (mentorship and grant opportunities), and discuss how the Network will add value to both your organization’s work and your growth as a food systems practitioner. Register here.

3. A Closer Look at how the Business Decisions and Financial Performance of Local and Regional Small and Mid-Size Farms Influence Community Economic Outcomes
January 25 // 2-3 PM ET
This webinar for agricultural lenders, economic development professionals, and others interested in the economic outcomes associated with local foods will highlight the results of a number of projects that explore the role of local and regional food business strategies on financial performance of participating farms. We highlight early framing of this sector from a USDA NIFA project led by Oklahoma State and Colorado State Universities, recently published results on financial performance from USDA Ag Resource Management Survey data and results from Cornell University’s analysis of New York’s Greenmarkets. Register here

4. Selecting, Installing, and Managing School Garden Bed Systems

January 30 // 4-5 PM ET
The National School Garden Network is presenting this webinar focused on choosing the best garden bed system for your school garden program. When you are working with multiple school garden sites, the number of variables to consider increases and using standardized bed systems with all of your schools can provide both benefits and challenges. In this webinar, we will hear from SGSOs who have developed  standard garden bed packages and find out what has worked for them and how they source their materials. Register here

5. Empowered Eaters: A Road Map for Stronger Nutrition Education Policies
January 31 // 3-4 PM ET
The Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior is presenting this webinar. With such a pressing need today for great nutrition education, alongside accessible and affordable healthy food, how are federal, state, and local governments responding? To answer this, the Tisch Food Center just launched a series of “Empowered Eaters” reports. This webinar details the landscape of public policy and investment in nutrition education, using New York as a case study. The reports provide a road map to strengthen the complex public systems that currently support nutrition education. SNEB Members attend webinars free as a benefit of membership. Non-member cost is $25 Register here

6. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics Webinar: Farm to School and Food Waste 

February 1 // 2-3 PM ET
Farm to school initiatives across the country are changing the way students and community members view and consume fresh, local foods and interact with their local food community. In many places, that change includes reducing food waste. From food banks to composting to sharing tables, join the National Farm to School Network's February Trending topics webinar to learn about best practices, initiatives, and resources to reduce food waste through farm to school. Register here

7. NFSN WEBINAR Advancing Equity Through Farm to School

February 13 // 3-4pm ET
The National Farm to School Network (NFSN) recognizes racial and social equity as a central tenet of farm to school and has just released an organizational equity statement to publicly convey NFSN's commitment to advancing equity through farm to school and to share our equity journey. Join NFSN partners and staff on February 13 at 3pm ET to review the organization's equity statement and to hear from farm to school practitioners about their successes and challenges with advancing equity through farm to school. Register here

8. New Jersey Farm to School Summit

March 14 // Mercerville, NJ
The New Jersey Department of Agriculture will host the second bi-annual Farm to School Summit on Wednesday, March 14 at the Robert Wood Johnson Conference Center. The day-long event will feature key players in Farm to School from across the state who will share their work in promoting school gardens, educating students in food literacy, providing taste test education with local produce procurement and nutrition education, and sharing best practices to highlight the impact these efforts are having in the schools they serve. Attendance is free with a light breakfast and lunch included. Register here. Space is limited.


Resources
1. National Young Farmers Coalition's FSA Guidebook
The Farm Service Agency Loans: The Ins and Outs of Growing a Farm with Federal Loans guidebook is written specifically to help beginning farmers and ranchers navigate the credit options offered by the Farm Service Agency, and was made possible by a cooperative agreement with FSA. Find more information on NYFC's website.The guidebook is a great resource for farmer trainings and can be shared widely. 


Take Action
1. Scholarships Open for 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference
The National Farm to School Network is now accepting applications for scholarships to the 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference, which will take place in Cincinnati, Ohio, April 25-27, 2018. This event is the top national training and networking event for farm to cafeteria professionals working to improve community health, build economic opportunities for farmers and producers, and ensure long-term sustainability for local food efforts nationwide. To ensure the conference reflects the full diversity of the movement, scholarships are prioritized for farmers and farm support organizations, farm to college / hospital practitioners, early care and education providers, food service professionals, persons of color, and youth (through age 22). Learn more and submit your application at farmtocafeteriaconference.org. The deadline to apply is Feb. 12 at 8pm ET.

2. Call for Proposals for the 2018 Place-Based Food Systems Conference
The Place-Based Food Systems Conference 2018 is now accepting proposals for presentations, manuscripts and/or posters. Community organizations, NGOs, and other civil society groups as well as academic institutions are highly encouraged to apply. Submission deadline: March 31st, 2018. Apply here


Job Opportunities 
1. Farm Director, Hillside School
Hillside School seeks to hire a new Farm Director to lead and manage their 25-acre farm. Learn more here.

2. Community Based Food Systems Intern, Wallace Center
The Wallace Center at Winrock International is seeking a Community Based Food Systems Intern to be based in Little Rock, AR or Arlington, VA. Learn more here

3. Youth Education Director, Mass Ave Project

The Buffalo, NY-based Mass Ave Project (MAP) seeks to hire a Youth Education Director. Learn more here

4. Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Apprenticeship, CEFS

The Center for Environmental Farming Systems (CEFS) Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Apprenticeship Program is seeking individuals from a variety of different backgrounds to participate in a hands-on work and study program that trains participants in many aspects of sustainable agriculture production and research. Learn more here


Farm to School in the News

North Mariana Island students tour agriculture center
“Part of promoting gardens at schools is to show the students where food comes from. Our islands import many perishable fruits and vegetables, of which may be produced on our islands. The importance of growing foods at school or at home is to help the students and their families understand sustainability. Sustainability in a sense where we can produce some foods at our homes for consumption, therefore decreasing some costs spent on imported fruits and vegetable” (Saipan Tribune)

Farm to School and Early Care Success in Minnesota

Check out this video featuring Minnesota's farm to school and early care programs.Farm to School and Farm to Early Care programs provide children with access to fresh, healthy food, while supporting local farmers in their communities.(Center for Prevention MN)

In honor of Martin Luther King Jr.'s service, Washington revitalizes school garden

Volunteers rolled up their sleeves on Martin Luther King Day and got a little dirt under their nails, while also working to give the students of Suquamish Elementary School an opportunity to learn about gardening, botany and healthy eating. (Kitsap Daily News)

Kansas FFA students build school garden and pond

A garden to provide food for students who need it and a pond to give those with disabilities a quiet space. On Saturday, members of FFA participated in a community day building a garden and a koi fish pond on school property.(KWCH)

Read past editions of This Week for more funding opportunities, webinars and events, jobs, and ways to take action to support farm to school growth across the country.

This Week in Farm to School: 1/16/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, January 16, 2018
Every week, we share opportunities, action items and a selection of media stories that relate to the farm to school movement. To submit an item for consideration, send us an email. To be considered, content should be of national interest to the farm to school community. 

Grants & Funding

1. America's Promise Healthy Schools Fund
The America's Promise Healthy Schools Fund will support communities working to create healthier school environments for all children. Recognizing that school-centered health intersects with many areas outside of education - housing, employment, transportation, and food access - as well as many audiences, efforts should serve as a hub for cross-sector collaboration, youth and community engagement, and broader policy and systemic change. America’s Promise will award three to five, two-year grants of up to $30,000. Applications are due January 22. Learn more here

2. Center for Disease Control (CDC) Grant
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently announced the availability of fiscal year 2018 funds to implement initiatives to improve student health and academic achievement through nutrition, physical activity, and the management of chronic conditions in schools. This grant is available to state education agencies (SEAs). Deadline: March 5, 2018.

3. 2018 Project Orange Thumb Grant Application

The Fiskars Project Orange Thumb Grant Program will grant 30 recipients $3,500 in gift cards and tools to help support their goals of neighborhood beautification and horticulture education. The garden initiative must be for a not-for-profit or 501(c)(3) organization within North America that has not received a Project Orange Thumb grant in the past. The Project Orange Thumb team looks for organizations committed to the long-term success of gardens that will promote healthy and sustainable food sources, community collaboration and neighborhood beautification. Learn more here


Webinars & Events

1. NFSN WEBINAR Leveraging State Farm to School Networks to Affect Legislation
January 18 // 2-3pm ET
Join the National Farm to School Network to learn how state farm to school networks and stakeholders can have an impact on local and state legislation that supports farm to school efforts. Guest speakers will include Natalie McKinney, Executive Director of the Kōkua Hawaiʻi Foundation and NFSN Hawai’i Core Partner, discussing lessons learned from organizing, advocating and keeping the pressure on to successfully pass state farm to school policy. Attendees will learn about the importance of advocacy and education with policy decision makers, and take away tips and tools for jumpstarting advocacy efforts in their own communities. This webinar is open to the public, and anyone interested in learning about farm to school policy is encouraged to attend. Register here

2. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics Webinar: Farm to School and Food Waste 
February 1 // 2-3 PM ET
Farm to school initiatives across the country are changing the way students and community members view and consume fresh, local foods and interact with their local food community. In many places, that change includes reducing food waste. From food banks to composting to sharing tables, join the National Farm to School Network's February Trending topics webinar to learn about best practices, initiatives, and resources to reduce food waste through farm to school. Register here

3. Life Lab's 2018 School Garden Workshops
Santa Cruz, CA
In Life Lab's Garden Classroom on the UC Santa Cruz campus, professional trainers bring inspiration and information to educators interested in bringing learning to life in the garden. Workshops are available on a variety of garden / outdoor learning topics and will be hosted throughout 2018. For more details and registration information, visit: www.lifelab.org/gcworkshops


Resources & Research
1. Supporting Local Food Councils
Supporting Local Food Councils” is a free resource that is open to all. There are 15 modules in the course, which take about 1-2 hours per module to complete. There is no deadline for completion and the videos/course materials can be accessed at any time – including during your food council meetings. This resource was designed with extension professionals and other community development specialists in mind as these individuals are often asked to engage in local food 
systems work. 

2. Question Keeper Database

The Question Keeper Database, from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Local Foods, is a database of survey questions that allows you to build your own evaluation questionnaire. The overall purpose is to enable everyone working in the area of food systems do their own evaluation. The Question Keeper recently expanded farm to school/early care and education content and is easily searchable by content areas and target audience. Find out more and register for a free account here. If you would like to suggest survey/question content to add to the database, please email Lacy Stephens (lacy@farmtoschool.org). 

3. Food Justice Requires Land Justice
"The food justice movement is one of the most promising political developments of the last generation. It has broadened and deepened environmentalism by knitting together concerns about economic inequality, labor rights, environmental health, and sustainable agriculture. But what often goes unmentioned in discussions of food justice is that it all begins with the land—who owns it, how they own it, and how it gets passed down from one generation to the next. This is something Savi Horne never forgets: food justice requires land justice." Read more here.


Take Action

1. Scholarships Open for 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference
The National Farm to School Network is now accepting applications for scholarships to the 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference, which will take place in Cincinnati, Ohio, April 25-27, 2018. This event is the top national training and networking event for farm to cafeteria professionals working to improve community health, build economic opportunities for farmers and producers, and ensure long-term sustainability for local food efforts nationwide. To ensure the conference reflects the full diversity of the movement, scholarships are prioritized for farmers and farm support organizations, farm to college / hospital practitioners, early care and education providers, food service professionals, persons of color, and youth (through age 22). Learn more and submit your application at farmtocafeteriaconference.org. The deadline to apply is Feb. 12 at 8pm ET.

2. Start Planning for National School Breakfast Week (March 5–9)
Have you started planning for National School Breakfast Week (NSBW)? Students, parents, food service staff, educators, public officials, and advocates from across the country will be celebrating school breakfast during NSBW — March 5–9, 2018.


Job Opportunities 

1. Director of Communications & Member Relations, Federation of Southern Cooperative/ Land Assistance Fund
The Federation of Southern Cooperatives/Land Assistance Fund is seeking an accomplished Director of Communications & Member Relations who has 5-10 years of communications experience. Learn more here

2. Director of Finance and Administration, Tilth Alliance
Tilth Alliance seeks a Director of Finance and Administration to act as a key member of the senior leadership team, overseeing the organization’s financial planning and management functions. Learn more here

3. Multiple Positions, New Haven Ecology Project/Common Ground 

Common Ground seeks a Farm Based Education Coordinator  and an Interim Farm Manager for their New Haven, CT based program. 


Farm to School in the News
Washington Breakfast After the Bell and Farm to School
Washington HB 1508 passed the House on January 10, 2018. The bill acknowledges that school food programs are associated with improvements for students’ absenteeism, test results and graduation rates. Furthermore, it requires “high-needs” schools to offer breakfast after the bell to each student. Finally, the bill also increases support for farm to school programs. (School Nutrition)

Wisconsin Farm to School steps away from PTO

It’s been a busy year for Cambridge’s Farm to School Program. It has maintained a Chef in the Classroom series, arranged for the planting of berries, greens and other produce at school farms, gardens and greenhouses, hosted pizza-making nights and taught elementary schoolers to recycle and to compost their lunch leftovers. Now, the Farm to School program is making possibly its biggest move yet. Recently, it stepped out from under the umbrella of the Cambridge PTO, where it had been a committee, and became its own organization. (HNG News)

Mancos Ranch helps supply Colorado farm to school program

A year and a half into its existence, Durango School District 9-R’s food distribution center is thriving and has allowed the district to expand its offerings. The distribution center aggregates fruits, vegetables and meat from local farms for 9-R and other nearby school districts. (The Journal)

Read past editions of This Week for more funding opportunities, webinars and events, jobs, and ways to take action to support farm to school growth across the country.

This Week in Farm to School: 1/9/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, January 09, 2018
Every week, we share opportunities, action items and a selection of media stories that relate to the farm to school movement. To submit an item for consideration, send us an email. To be considered, content should be of national interest to the farm to school community. 

Grants & Funding 

1. America's Promise Healthy Schools Fund
The America's Promise Healthy Schools Fund will support communities working to create healthier school environments for all children. Recognizing that school-centered health intersects with many areas outside of education - housing, employment, transportation, and food access - as well as many audiences, efforts should serve as a hub for cross-sector collaboration, youth and community engagement, and broader policy and systemic change. America’s Promise will award three to five, two-year grants of up to $30,000. Applications are due January 22. Learn more here


Webinars & Events
1. NFSN WEBINAR Leveraging State Farm to School Networks to Affect Legislation
January 18 // 2-3pm ET
Join the National Farm to School Network to learn how state farm to school networks and stakeholders can have an impact on local and state legislation that supports farm to school efforts. Guest speakers will include Natalie McKinney, Executive Director of the Kōkua Hawaiʻi Foundation and NFSN Hawai’i Core Partner, discussing lessons learned from organizing, advocating and keeping the pressure on to successfully pass state farm to school policy. Attendees will learn about the importance of advocacy and education with policy decision makers, and take away tips and tools for jumpstarting advocacy efforts in their own communities. This webinar is open to the public, and anyone interested in learning about farm to school policy is encouraged to attend. Register here

2. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics Webinar: Farm to School and Food Waste 
February 1 // 2-3 PM ET
Farm to school initiatives across the country are changing the way students and community members view and consume fresh, local foods and interact with their local food community. In many places, that change includes reducing food waste. From food banks to composting to sharing tables, join the National Farm to School Network's February Trending topics webinar to learn about best practices, initiatives, and resources to reduce food waste through farm to school. Register here

3. Call for Workshop Proposals for MT Farm to School Summit 2018
Organizers are seeking presenters for the Montana Farm to School Summit: Cultivating Connections, to be held Sept. 13-14, 2018 at University of Montana in Missoula. Proposals are open for workshop (50 minute) and Montana Food Talks (5 minute) sessions. The deadline to submit a proposal is March 31, 2018. Learn more here


Take Action
1. Scholarships Open for 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference
The National Farm to School Network is now accepting applications for scholarships to the 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference, which will take place in Cincinnati, Ohio, April 25-27, 2018. This event is the top national training and networking event for farm to cafeteria professionals working to improve community health, build economic opportunities for farmers and producers, and ensure long-term sustainability for local food efforts nationwide. To ensure the conference reflects the full diversity of the movement, scholarships are prioritized for farmers and farm support organizations, farm to college / hospital practitioners, early care and education providers, food service professionals, persons of color, and youth (through age 22). Learn more and submit your application at farmtocafeteriaconference.org. The deadline to apply is Feb. 12 at 8pm ET.

2. USDA Farm to School Census coming in 2019
The USDA Office of Community Food Systems (OCFS) plans to initiate data collection for the 2019 Farm to School Census in early 2019 for school year 2017 – 2018. We are halfway through the school year, so now is the time to think about how you track your farm to school activities. Need some assistance tracking your activities? Check out USDA’s Farm to School Activity Tracking Sheets or connect with your USDA Farm to School Regional Lead for guidance.


Job Opportunities 
1. FoodCorps Service Members
FoodCorps service member applications are open for the 2018-2019 school year. The deadline to apply is March 15, 2018 at 6pm PST. Learn more here

2. Little City Sprouts Coordinator, Hartford Food System
Hartford Food System is seeking a part-time Coordinator to direct and implement our Little City Sprouts (LCS) program. LCS provides children aged 2-5 years in Hartford, CT early learning centers with the opportunity to learn about, grow, cook and taste fresh healthy food through food-related field trips, gardening, nutrition, and cooking lessons designed for them. Learn more here

3. Food Tank Research and Writing Fellowship
Food Tank is hiring two highly skilled, creative, and hardworking Research and Writing Fellows with experience in and a commitment to food justice, food policy, nutrition, and sustainable agriculture. Learn more here

4. Communications Director, Food Solutions New England
Food Solutions New England seeks a Communication Director. The position is based at the Sustainability Institute at UNH. To learn more, visit the UNH Job Page. All applicants MUST apply through the UNH job page. The position is number PS0704FY18, Communication Director, Food Solutions New England. The deadline to apply is January 21, 2018. 


Farm to School in the News

New York Governor Announces $1 Million Awarded to 12 Farm to School Programs
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced $1 million has been awarded to 12 farm to school projects across New York State. The projects will benefit 219,471 students in seven regions across the state. The program also supports the expansion of the NY Thursdays Program, a school meal initiative that uses local, farm-fresh foods on Thursdays throughout the school year. (New York State Governor’s Office)

Indiana FFA chapter teaches ag from piggy to plate
Farm to school activities are paying off for Paoli Jr. Sr. High School’s FFA chapter. They are now able to buy all of their own inputs by selling the products they produce. And in addition to selling to the school, the chapter has also been selling pork and lettuce to retailers and restaurants in the community. (Ag Daily)

Where's the beef (from)? Hawai’i school lunches go local
Hawaii's effort to grow its own food is taking a step forward as public school students are being served locally-grown beef for the first time in decades."The DOE is committing to a whole year of these purchase, very similar," said Jayson Watts of the Lieutenant Governor's office. "They're going to try a whole lot of different things," including bananas and mangoes. Locally-grown bananas are next for the farm to school tryout next month. (HawaiiNewsNow)

Read past editions of This Week for more funding opportunities, webinars and events, jobs, and ways to take action to support farm to school growth across the country.

This Week in Farm to School: 12/19/17

NFSN Staff Tuesday, December 19, 2017
Every week, we share opportunities, action items and a selection of media stories that relate to the farm to school movement. To submit an item for consideration, send us an email. To be considered, content should be of national interest to the farm to school community. 

Grants & Funding 

1. Get Out and Grow: School Garden Sweepstakes 
Your school could win $15,000 toward a garden—plus a visit from a Team USA Athlete! Smucker Away From Home wants to help schools across the country develop gardens that help cultivate hard work and healthy eating habits. The Get Out and Grow School Garden Sweepstakes is open to School Administrators or Foodservice Directors of K-12 schools. Learn more and apply here.

2. America's Promise Grant
As many as five two-year grants of up to $300,000 are available for school districts and organizations working toward creating healthier school environments. This exciting new funding opportunity is brought to you by America's Promise Alliance in partnership with FoodCorps and four other core partners. Deadline to apply is January 22, 2018. Watch the informational webinar and learn more here.

3. Tater Tats Seed Fund Grants for Growers

Are you a growers? Tater Tats aims to help people grow vegetables--whether that means growing vegetables for the first time, expanding an operation, or experimenting with crazier, more delicious varieties. They applaud commitment to the land, to biodiversity, to the legacy of heirloom varieties, and want to help you grow! Tater Tats is giving ten percent of 2017 sales to subsidize seed purchases by offering $300 grants to vegetable producers nationwide. The deadline for next year's funding is December 31, 2017. Learn more and apply here


Webinars
1. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics: SNAP-Ed and Farm to School
January 4 // 2-3pm ET
SNAP-Ed (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education), an evidence-based program aimed at helping people make healthier food choices and live healthier lives, offers a growing opportunity to bring food, nutrition and agriculture related education as well as gardening, local food procurement and other farm to school initiatives into schools and communities across the country. We will hear from practitioners from University of Florida's Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences and other SNAP-Ed programs about the integration of farm to school in both direct education and policy, systems and environmental change SNAP-Ed initiatives. Register here.

2. NFSN WEBINAR Farm to ECE Quarterly Webinar: Placing Equity at the Center of Farm to Early Care and Education

January 9 // 3-4:15pm ET
At the intersection of multiple sectors, including policy, education, food systems and social justice, farm to early care and education (farm to ECE) can be a platform for advancing racial and social equity. Access to farm to ECE opportunities may be one approach to addressing health and education inequities by increasing access to healthy, local foods and high-quality education opportunities for children and communities while promoting ECE policies that address inequity. Farm to ECE can, at the same time, address inequities in the food system by changing ECE purchasing practices and policies. Join the National Farm to School Network, the Policy Equity Group, the Food Trust, and the Center for Environmental Farming Systems to learn how these organizations are both evaluating internal structures and practices to prioritize equity and working towards programs and policies that place equity at the center of farm to ECE initiatives. Register here.

3. Webinar: Opportunities in the 2018 Farm Bill: Federal Efforts to Advance Equitable and Sustainable Food Systems

Jan. 9 // 3-4:15pm ET
This webinar will provide a brief overview of the Farm Bill and status of the reauthorization process, as well as highlight four key policy pillars within the legislation: the Healthy Food Financing Initiative (HFFI), Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), healthy food incentive programs such as Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI), and sustainable agricultural and local/regional food system development. Speakers will discuss challenges and opportunities in each policy arena and highlight opportunities to get involved in shaping the next Farm Bill. Hosted by the Healthy Food Access Portal. Register here

4. NFSN WEBINAR Leveraging State Farm to School Networks to Affect Legislation

January 18 // 2-3pm ET
Join the National Farm to School Network to learn how state farm to school networks and stakeholders can have an impact on local and state legislation that supports farm to school efforts. Guest speakers will include Natalie McKinney, Executive Director of the Kōkua Hawaiʻi Foundation and NFSN Hawai’i Core Partner, discussing lessons learned from organizing, advocating and keeping the pressure on to successfully pass state farm to school policy. Attendees will learn about the importance of advocacy and education with policy decision makers, and take away tips and tools for jumpstarting advocacy efforts in their own communities. This webinar is open to the public, and anyone interested in learning about farm to school policy is encouraged to attend. Register here


Take Action
1. Scholarships Open for 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference
The National Farm to School Network is now accepting applications for scholarships to the 9th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference, which will take place in Cincinnati, Ohio, April 25-27, 2018. This event is the top national training and networking event for farm to cafeteria professionals working to improve community health, build economic opportunities for farmers and producers, and ensure long-term sustainability for local food efforts nationwide. To ensure the conference reflects the full diversity of the movement, scholarships are prioritized for farmers and farm support organizations, farm to college / hospital practitioners, early care and education providers, food service professionals, persons of color, and youth (through age 22). Learn more and submit your application at farmtocafeteriaconference.org. The deadline to apply is Feb. 12 at 8pm ET.

2. 2018 Sustainable Agriculture Education Association Conference Call for Proposals
Hosted at University of Hawaiʻi West Oʻahu campus July 27-29, 2018. Exploring themes of: Indigenous knowledge, decolonization and socio-ecological resiliency in agroecology and sustainable food systems education. Proposals are due by 11.59 pm on Feb. 5, 2018. Learn more and submit your proposal here

3. NYC: GreenThumb GrowTogether 2018 Workshop Request for Proposals

Help ring in GreenThumb’s 40th anniversary through workshops based around the theme “Honoring our Roots.” You are invited to submit a workshop proposal for the 34th Annual GreenThumb GrowTogether Conference on Saturday, March 31, 2018. Please submit your proposals by Monday, January 8, 2018. Learn more and submit your proposal here

4. USDA Inviting Comments on School Lunch Ingredients

The U.S. Department of Agriculture is inviting comments on what it called “food crediting,” the system that defines how each food item fits into a meal for the National School Lunch Program and other federal child nutrition programs. 


Resources 
1. 2018 Farm Bill Updates
The U.S. House Committee on Agriculture has launched a new online resource designed to provide updates and information related to the 2018 Farm Bill. 

2. 25 Children’s Books Growing Young Minds
Food Tank has compiled a list of 25 children’s books that can help stimulate food and agriculture awareness across all ages. From learning about where food comes from and the hardworking hands that grow it, to the importance of vibrant ecosystems, to cultural food diversity, these books will make great gifts for hungry young minds. Read more


Job Opportunities
1. Multiple Positions, New Entry Sustainable Farming Project
New Entry Sustainable Farming Project's Farmer Training Team seeks to higher an Incubator Farm Manager and a Beginning Farmer Education & Curriculum Coordinator. Both positions are based in Lowell, MA. 

2. ProFarmer In-field Education Manager, Hudson Valley Farm Hub

The Hudson Valley Farm Hub is seeking a full time ProFarmer In-field Education Manager. She/he/they will be responsible for in-field instruction, mentoring, and the daily supervision of ProFarmer trainees, who are full-time, year-round Farm Hub employees. Learn more and apply

3. Farm Director, Hillside School
Hillside School for boys seeks to hire a full-time Farm Director to manage their 25-acre farm. Learn more and apply.


Farm to School in the News
Florida Elementary students to share harvest
“The kids love it,” said program educational coordinator Krista Keisu on Wednesday, December 6. “It’s so crazy to see them get excited about trying broccoli and cucumbers. They get to be part of growing the food, which makes them more inclined to want to try it.” (The Gabber)

Mississippi State University students design agriculture optional school in Tennessee

Seventeen undergraduates and two master’s students in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences landscape architecture major spent the semester reimagining the master plan of Bolton High School in Arlington, Tennessee. Located in a small town just northeast of Memphis, the high school plans to return to its rich agricultural roots as an agriculture optional school. The school district has optional programming, with schools that provide “creative and rigorous coursework and extra-curricular programs” with a “specialized learning focus.” (MSU News)

Foodie fight: Louisiana Schools’ culinary programs compete to create the next top lunch

High school students will vote with their plates Thursday, Dec. 14, in school cafeterias across St. Tammany Parish to help choose the winner of the Pro Start culinary program Grab and Go Menu Competition. (New Orleans Advocate)

Read past editions of This Week for more funding opportunities, webinars and events, jobs, and ways to take action to support farm to school growth across the country.

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