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National Farm to School Network

News

This Week in Farm to School: 7/17/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, July 17, 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 & Events
1. NFSN WEBINAR Farm to ECE: Indigenous Foods in Early Care and Education Settings
August 2, 2pm ET
Incorporating indigenous foods into education and meals in early care and education (ECE) settings offers many benefits, including increasing children’s knowledge of tribal history and food ways and strengthening cultural, spiritual, and social connections in the community. However, ensuring indigenous foods are procured, prepared, and served in ways that align with state licensing and Child and Adult Care Food Program regulations can be challenging. Join this webinar to hear from speakers from the National Farm to School Network, the Institute for Agriculture Trade and Policy, and the Aleutian Pribilof Islands Association and to learn about innovative practices and resources that help overcome these challenges and support the inclusion of indigenous foods in ECE settings and in CACFP. Register here. 

2. The Food Project’s Summer Institute
August 1-3 // Boston, Lynn, and Lincoln, MA
The Food Project’s three-day Summer Institute is packed with activities on our farms, workshops, and engaging conversation that will teach you about youth development, sustainable urban and suburban agricultural models, food and social justice initiatives, and how to build more food secure communities. Register here.

3. Healthy Eating in Practice Conference: Special offer for National Farm to School Network
August 26-29 // Asheville, NC
Healthy Eating in Practice is a hands-on conference for healthcare professionals and advocates to better support healthy eating. Grounded in experiential learning, this national conference will equip attendees with practical skills and approaches that work in the day-to-day reality of healthcare. In addition to presentations by leading practitioners, researchers, and policy experts, attendees will visit area farms and participate in cooking workshops. NFSN Executive Director and Co-Founder, Anupama Joshi, will be a speaker. Use code NFSN0826 to save $200 off the registration rate through July 25. Register here.

4. Farm to Cafeteria Canada Conference
May 16-17, 2019 // Victoria, British Columbia
This conference will gather over 450 expected participants from across the continent for an opportunity to learn, celebrate, share, and inspire the movement to bring healthy, local, and sustainable foods to the minds and plates of students in Canada and beyond. Details about the conference (and May 15 pre-conference activities) should be out by September 1 and can be found here.


Research & Resources
1. Call for Abstracts: Food Access Among Low-Income Populations
A special issues of the Translational Behavioral Medicine (TBM) is soliciting papers focusing on the intersect of diet/obesity and poverty. Papers should examine some aspect of each of these areas from a behavioral science perspective. Within these topic areas, TBM is also interested in papers that include results demonstrating the role that various social determinants of health play in food access among low-income populations. Learn more here.


Job Opportunities
1. Farm to Early Childcare and Education Program Coordinator, Center for Environmental Farming Systems (Raleigh, NC)
The Center for Environmental Farming Systems is hiring a Program Coordinator for its Farm to Early Care and Education Initiative. The Program Coordinator will lead its training team and help develop and deliver trainings to stakeholders throughout the state. Learn more and apply here.

2. Senior Economist, Food Systems - Food & Environment Program, Union of Concerned Scientists (Washington, DC)
Union of Concerned Scientists has a position open in its Food & Environment Program as a Sr. Economist in its DC location. This person will conduct applied economic research on the market failures and externalities across a broad range of food and agricultural production, value chains, natural environment, food security, nutrition, public health, and more. Learn more and apply here.

3. Nutrition Services Director, Berkeley Unified School District (Berkeley, CA)
An exciting opportunity to shape the school food system of Berkeley is available. The Nutrition Services Director plays a key role in the district’s ability to innovate and provide students high quality and delicious school means. Learn more and apply here.


Farm to School in the News
Gardens grow sense of community for Illinois neighborhood
Arlington Heights Elementary School District 25 is leading an effort to integrate students from low-income families into their community through a batch of new programs and amenities, including community gardens and summer meals. Called the Dryden Place Project and launched last year, the program’s resources are proving helpful for the students. (Daily Herald)

California school district combines math, nutrition lessons at junior farmers markets
The Manteca Unified School District Nutrition Education department is hosting six junior farmers markets this month at various public parks to give children additional access to healthy foods, with an educational twist.. Each student who attends will be given a bag with three “nutrition education dollars” inside. After listening to a 15-minute presentation on the importance of eating fresh fruit and vegetables, the young shoppers can use the “dollars” on produce items marked with different prices. (Recordnet)

Massachusetts school nutritionist looks to bring orchard to Medford High
A school nutrition professional at a Massachusetts high school has proposed installing an outdoor learning space and fruit orchard on campus. The orchard would include blueberries, apples and peaches, among other fruits that would be available for students to eat. (Medford Wicked Local)


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: 7/10/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, July 10, 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 & Events
1. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics in Farm to School: Farm to Summer
July 12, 2pm ET
The USDA’s Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) anticipates providing more than 200 million free meals to children across the U.S. when school is out of session this summer. The seasonality and flexibility of SFSP create a perfect opportunity to highlight local products and incorporate food education. Join this webinar to learn about USDA farm to summer resources and hear about innovative farm to summer initiatives from NFSN Core Partners in Kentucky and Massachusetts. Register here.

2. NFSN WEBINAR Farm to ECE: Indigenous Foods in Early Care and Education Settings
August 2, 2-3pm ET
Incorporating indigenous foods into education and meals in early care and education (ECE) settings offers many benefits, including increasing children’s knowledge of tribal history and food ways and strengthening cultural, spiritual, and social connections in the community. However, ensuring indigenous foods are procured, prepared, and served in ways that align with state licensing and Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) regulations can be challenging. Join this webinar to hear from speakers from the National Farm to School Network, the Institute for Agriculture Trade and Policy, and the Aleutian Pribilof Islands Association and to learn about innovative practices and resources that help overcome these challenges and support the inclusion of indigenous foods in ECE settings and in CACFP. Register here. 

3. Free Webcast: Community Forum on School Gardens as Havens in Turbulent Times
July 12, 5pm ET
As part of the 2018 National Children & Youth Garden Symposium later this week, the American Horticultural Society will host a community forum, "The Garden as Haven: Finding Resilience and Renewal in Turbulent Times." The moderated discussion will take place at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, and will include a free live webcast starting at 5 p.m. Eastern on Thursday, July 12. Register to participate in the webcast here. 

4. Louisiana Farm to School Conference 2018
October 9-10, 2018 // Baton Rouge, LA
The LSU AgCenter is hosting a statewide farm to school conference  this October to bring together farmers, food distributors, school administrators, school nutrition program directors, teachers, parents, food hubs, and food processors in the interest of Louisiana agriculture, local food systems, school gardens, and healthy school meals. New this year, the event will include a Meet the Buyers Reception - a casual evening of networking with retail, wholesale, and institutional buyers to learn how to get more fresh produce into the value chain. Learn more and register here. 


Research & Resources
1. Hawai’i Study Reveals How to “Beef Up” the ‘Aina Pono School Lunch Program
Lieutenant Governor Doug Chin, the Hawai’i State Department of Education (HIDOE) and the Hawai’i Department of Agriculture (DOA), together with private stakeholders, implemented the ‘Aina Pono farm to school program and collected necessary data, including a statewide market research of the agriculture industry. The data provides the HIDOE with information directly from farmers, processors, and distributors. The research shows ag producers are willing to increase productions if they have access to long-term contracts, which will allow schools to stimulate and support local agriculture. Read more here.


Job Opportunities
1. Education Coordinator & Community Programs Coordinator - Youth Garden Project (Moab, UT)
Youth Garden Project is currently hiring for two Americorps VISTA positions: Education Coordinator and Community Programs Coordinator. The term of service dates are August 19, 2018 - August 30, 2019. Learn more and apply here. 


Farm to School in the News
Colorado students get hands-on experience in farm work
Southwest Open School and Montezuma Land Conservancy have teamed up to give students hands-on learning experience in agriculture. The students work Monday through Thursday in the SWOS school garden and at Fozzie’s Farm, learning job skills and learning about local agriculture. The students also take field trips to gain a sense of the diversity of production. (The Journal)

Georgia teen manages community garden
Although Sylvester’s Village Community Garden is supported by multiple volunteers and sponsors, 14-year-old Janya Green is the one who runs the place. “Due to my work here at the garden, the (Worth County) school system has become a part of it,” she said. “One time, the Worth County School System brought 180 kids here. These kids followed me here, which makes them even more attached to the garden.” The Village Community Garden is a personal project for Janya that she wants to share with everyone she can. (Albany Herald)

Wisconsin’s growing food independence
What started as farm to school lessons in the classroom has grown into a full-scale movement, with school food service staff teaching students Farm to School lessons, kids at the elementary, middle, and high school level planting school gardens (with six districts serving what they grow in their gardens in the lunch lines), and science and agriculture teachers working with students to build and operate hydro and aquaponics systems, greenhouses, and chicken coops. (Green Bay Press Gazette)

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: 7/3/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, July 03, 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 & Events
1. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics in Farm to School: Farm to Summer
July 12, 2pm ET
The USDA’s Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) anticipates providing more than 200 million free meals to children across the U.S. when school is out of session this summer. The seasonality and flexibility of SFSP create a perfect opportunity to highlight local products and incorporate food education. Join this webinar to learn about USDA farm to summer resources and hear about innovative farm to summer initiatives from NFSN Core Partners in Kentucky and Massachusetts. Register here.

2. NFSN WEBINAR Farm to ECE: Indigenous Foods in Early Care and Education Settings
August 2, 2pm ET
Incorporating indigenous foods into education and meals in early care and education (ECE) settings offers many benefits, including increasing children’s knowledge of tribal history and food ways and strengthening cultural, spiritual, and social connections in the community. However, ensuring indigenous foods are procured, prepared, and served in ways that align with state licensing and Child and Adult Care Food Program regulations can be challenging. Join this webinar to hear from speakers from the National Farm to School Network, the Institute for Agriculture Trade and Policy, and the Aleutian Pribilof Islands Association and to learn about innovative practices and resources that help overcome these challenges and support the inclusion of indigenous foods in ECE settings and in CACFP. Register here

3. School Garden Support Organization Leadership Institute
January 20-25, 2019
Join 20 other School Garden Support Organization teams from across the nation to strengthen your organization’s goal of enhancing professional development and ongoing support for school garden programs in your region. Learn more here and apply by August 10.


Policy Updates
1. Senate Passes 2018 Farm Bill - No Farm to School Amendments Included
The Senate passed its farm bill last week without addressing many filed amendments, including two farm to school amendments: Geographic Preference and the Pilot Project for Unprocessed Fruits & Vegetables. Although the National Farm to School Network is disappointed these amendments weren't included, our combined advocacy efforts were effective in bringing farm to school issues to the forefront. We also gained many new farm to school champions through this process - thank you Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC), Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) and Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR)! Thanks to everyone who made calls and continues to share the importance and successes of farm to school with policymakers. The National Farm to School Network continues to work with congressional champions to identify additional avenues for strengthening and advancing farm to school priorities. 


Research & Resources
1. New Farm to School Research Indicates Increase in Fruit & Vegetable Consumption
A new article in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, “A Plate Waste Evaluation of a Farm to School Program,” indicates that participation in a farm to school program increases students’ fruit and vegetable consumption. Students at participating schools consumed, on average, 0.061 (P = .002) more servings of vegetables and 0.055 (P = .05) more servings of fruit after implementation of the farm to school program. Read more here


Job Opportunities
1. Nutrition Services Director, Berkeley Unified School District (Berkeley, CA)
An exciting opportunity to shape the school food system of Berkeley is available. The School Nutrition Services Director plays a key role in the district's ability to innovate and provide students high quality and delicious school meals. Learn more here


Farm to School in the News
Connecticut garden made accessible to all students
The community garden at Norfeldt Elementary School has long been an educational tool, but until now, it wasn't accessible in the same way for every student. That changed after the school received a grant to purchase two VegTrug raised gardens, which are elevated off the ground and accessible for all students, including those with physical disabilities. (Hartford Courant)

Many schools keep gardening efforts going all summer
For many schools across the country, the school year runs just the opposite of the growing season, making it difficult for educators to teach kids how to garden. But many school systems enlist volunteers to prep garden beds while students are on summer break, making the crops ready to tend when classes resume in September. (Associated Press)

Minnesota campers meet animals, taste herbs, envision ag careers
Middle- and high-school students in a Minnesota district are learning about agricultural careers at a camp hosted by the Minnesota State Engineering Center of Excellence. Students learn about animal and food science, and they made and took home a small hydroponics system. (The Free Press

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: 6/26/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, June 26, 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. Wallace Center Food Systems Leadership Network Professional Development Scholarship
Professional Development Scholarships of up to $500 are available on a bi-annual basis to emerging leaders in the Food Systems Leadership Network. Requests by emerging leaders of color will be prioritized for support. Applications are due July 1, 2018. Learn more here

2. GreenWorks! Grants
Project Learning Tree offers GreenWorks! grants of up to $1,000 to schools and youth organizations for environmental service-learning projects that link classroom learning to the real world. Students implement an action project they help design to green their school or to improve an aspect of their neighborhood’s environment. Applications are due Sept. 30. Learn more here

3. Eco Garden Systems Offering Discounted Elevated Gardens
Eco Gardens Systems is offering discounted elevated gardens to schools through its 501c3 program. Learn more here. For questions or signup, contact Craig Espelien, President of Eco Garden Systems, at (612) 845-0064 or cespelien@gmail.com.


Webinars
1. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics in Farm to School: Farm to Summer
July 12, 2pm ET
The USDA’s Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) anticipates providing more than 200 million free meals to children across the U.S. when school is out of session this summer. The seasonality and flexibility of SFSP create a perfect opportunity to highlight local products and incorporate food education. Join this webinar to learn about USDA farm to summer resources and hear about innovative farm to summer initiatives from NFSN Core Partners in Kentucky and Massachusetts. Register here.

2. NFSN WEBINAR Farm to ECE: Indigenous Foods in Early Care and Education Settings
August 2, 2pm ET
Incorporating indigenous foods into education and meals in early care and education (ECE) settings offers many benefits, including increasing children’s knowledge of tribal history and food ways and strengthening cultural, spiritual, and social connections in the community. However, ensuring indigenous foods are procured, prepared, and served in ways that align with state licensing and Child and Adult Care Food Program regulations can be challenging. Join this webinar to hear from speakers from the National Farm to School Network, the Institute for Agriculture Trade and Policy, and the Aleutian Pribilof Islands Association and to learn about innovative practices and resources that help overcome these challenges and support the inclusion of indigenous foods in ECE settings and in CACFP. Register here


Research & Resources
1. Seeking Information: Organic Practices in Farm to School
The National Farm to School Network is seeking information about and examples of schools/districts incorporating organic practices into farm to school initiatives. This could include purchasing certified organic and/or organically grown or raised products, educating students about organic practices, or using organic (or certified organic) gardening practices. Please complete this form with contact information for example schools/districts by Tuesday, July 3rd. The National Farm to School Network may contact these schools/districts for more information or to request their participation in a case study. For more information, or if you are unable to access the Google Form, contact Lacy Stephens, National Farm to School Network Program Manager, at lacy@farmtoschool.org.

2. New Resources: State Farm to School Networks Toolkit & State Farm to School Positions Guide
The National Farm to School Network is excited to announce the release of two new resources to support farm to school practitioners in strengthening their efforts to develop robust and sustainable statewide farm to school programs. The State Farm to School Networks Toolkit is designed to demonstrate best practices and lessons learned from 29 existing networks, and provides practitioners key strategies and approaches for developing and sustaining state farm to school networks. It includes a primer on general network models and development, a deep dive into state farm to school network best practices, case studies highlighting successful tools and tactics, and analysis of challenges for and the future of state farm to school networks. The State Farm to School Positions Guide aims to help stakeholders strategically advocate for the creation of more state agency and university Extension positions dedicated to supporting farm to school. The guide includes a list of all known existing state farm to school positions, four state case studies, an analysis of the current landscape of state farm to school positions, and sample job descriptions. Both resources can be downloaded at farmtoschool.org/resources.


Job Opportunities
1. Farm to School Specialist, Baltimore City Public Schools (Baltimore MD)
Baltimore City Public Schools seeks a Farm to School Programming Specialist to plan and implement farm to school instructional activities and programs and to provide related educational services for students, teachers, and volunteers in both classroom and outdoor environments. Learn more here

2. Michigan Food Systems Collaboration Academic Specialist (Lansing, MI)
The Michigan State University (MSU) Center for Regional Food Systems (CRFS) is seeking a full-time Academic Specialist to lead efforts to build upon and further develop the collaboration underlying the Michigan Good Food Charter. Learn more here.

3. Farm to School & Community Director, REAP Food Group (Madison, WI) 
The Farm to School & Community Director will provide strategic direction, management and implementation of REAP’s Farm to School Program in the Madison Metropolitan School District (MMSD) as well as grow community engagement beyond school walls to increase community access to food education and sustainable local foods. Learn more here

4. Farm to Business Director, REAP Food Group (Madison, WI) 
The Farm to Business Director will will provide strategic direction, management and implementation of REAP’s Farm to Business initiatives including 1) development of a Farm to Hospital initiative with area healthcare facilities, 2) coordination of a pilot vegetable processing project in 2019 for several institutional buyers, and 3) cultivation of the Buy Fresh Buy Local program, a restaurant and institutions partnership program committed to supporting a just, sustainable, local food system. Learn more here

5. Wisconsin AmeriCorps Farm to School Team
The Wisconsin AmeriCorps Farm to School Program is looking for dedicated service members for the upcoming service year! AmeriCorps Farm to School members have the opportunity to serve as either half-time (900 hours) or full-time (1700 hour) service terms as Nutrition Educators, Community Outreach Coordinators, or both.  The program year runs from August 15, 2018 to August 14, 2019. Learn more here


Farm to School in the News
USDA supports local foods in schools through farm to school grants
The U.S. Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service recently announced $5.2 million in grant awards to bring nutritious, local foods into schools and create new economic opportunities for farmers. The grants, part of the USDA Farm to School Program, will impact over 6,000 schools and 2.8 million students nationwide. (USDA Press Release)

Kansas students grow, sell produce
During the summer at Liberty Memorial Central Middle School in Lawrence, Kansas, students spend a few hours each week planting, harvesting, and taking their produce to market, where they sell their produce to help maintain their school’s garden program. (Lawrence Journal-World)

South Carolina program gets kids involved with agriculture
What began with a seed planted in the Charleston area in 2012 has taken root in 16 counties in South Carolina and sprouted into 147 school gardens across the state -- and counting. Since 2012, 463 South Carolina educators have received training through Clemson Extension’s School Gardening for South Carolina Educators training program. (The Times and Democrat

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: 6/19/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, June 19, 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 & Events
1. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics: Farm to Summer
July 12, 2pm ET
The USDA’s Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) anticipates providing more than 200 million free meals to children across the U.S. when school is out of session this summer. The seasonality and flexibility of SFSP create a perfect opportunity to highlight local products and incorporate food education. Join this webinar to learn about USDA farm to summer resources and hear about innovative farm to summer initiatives from NFSN Core Partners in Kentucky and Massachusetts. Register here.

2. NFSN WEBINAR Farm to ECE: Indigenous Foods in Early Care and Education Settings
August 2, 2pm ET
Incorporating indigenous foods into education and meals in early care and education (ECE) settings offers many benefits, including increasing children’s knowledge of tribal history and food ways and strengthening cultural, spiritual, and social connections in the community. However, ensuring indigenous foods are procured, prepared, and served in ways that align with state licensing and Child and Adult Care Food Program regulations can be challenging. Join this webinar to hear from speakers from the National Farm to School Network, the Institute for Agriculture Trade and Policy, and the Aleutian Pribilof Islands Association and to learn about innovative practices and resources that help overcome these challenges and support the inclusion of indigenous foods in ECE settings and in CACFP. Register here

3. It’s Pollinator Week!
Eleven years ago the U.S. Senate’s unanimous approval and designation of a week in June as “National Pollinator Week” marked a necessary step toward addressing the urgent issue of declining pollinator populations. Pollinator Week has now grown into an international celebration of the valuable ecosystem services provided by bees, birds, butterflies, bats and beetles. June 18-24 is Pollinator Week. Learn more here


Resources & Research
1. New Resources: State Farm to School Networks Toolkit & State Farm to School Positions Guide
The National Farm to School Network is excited to announce the release of two new resources to support farm to school practitioners in strengthening their efforts to develop robust and sustainable statewide farm to school programs. The State Farm to School Networks Toolkit is designed to demonstrate best practices and lessons learned from 29 existing networks, and provides practitioners key strategies and approaches for developing and sustaining state farm to school networks. It includes a primer on general network models and development, a deep dive into state farm to school network best practices, case studies highlighting successful tools and tactics, and analysis of challenges for and the future of state farm to school networks. The State Farm to School Positions Guide aims to help stakeholders strategically advocate for the creation of more state agency and university Extension positions dedicated to supporting farm to school. The guide includes a list of all known existing state farm to school positions, four state case studies, an analysis of the current landscape of state farm to school positions, and sample job descriptions. Both resources can be downloaded at farmtoschool.org/resources.

2. New Report: State Policy Development for Oregon’s Farm to School Grant Program: Successes and Lessons Learned
RTI International and the National Farm to School Network have released a new study that documents and analyzes the outcomes of state farm to school legislation in Oregon. State Policy Development for Oregon’s Farm to School Grant Program: Successes and Lessons Learned describes Oregon’s farm to school legislative process, and identifies Oregon’s farm to school state policy design attributes that have successfully leveraged limited state resources to improve farm to school participation among school districts. Successes, challenges and lessons learned about the effect of policies on program implementation are shared.Farm to school policy advocates in other states and territories can learn from the findings of this study to support their policy efforts. Learn more here

3. Washington State Department of Agriculture report examines the challenge of getting local produce to schools and other institutions 
Serving local produce and minimally processed foods is a goal for many school cafeterias and other institutions, but there are challenges to reaching that end. To understand the challenges and potential solutions better, WSDA’s Regional Markets team studied supply chains in Washington state for local, minimally processed food from farm to school for 2016-2017. The study, “Value Chain Strategies for Source-Identified Minimally Processed Produce for the School Market,” was completed earlier this year. The study also sought to identify strategies for developing a “value chain” infrastructure and building relationships to help local farms meet the demand for these products from schools, hospitals, and other institutional buyers. Read more here

4. Tracking Shows Increase in Local Food Purchasing at Michigan Schools
Since 2014, the MSU Center for Regional Food Systems has partnered with the Michigan Department of Education to track local food purchasing by K-12 schools. This short report shares the K-12 local food purchasing results from the 2017 MEGS+ application and compares these to the 2014 results. Read more


Policy Updates
1. Senate Agriculture Committee advances farm bill without farm to school 
Last week, the Senate Agriculture Committee voted 20-1 to pass its version of the farm bill, allowing the bill to be brought before the full Senate for a vote later this month. While none of the National Farm to School Network’s top policy priorities have been included in the Senate’s draft bill, there are a number of other provisions in the draft that support local and regional food systems, rural business development, beginning and socially disadvantaged farmers, and healthy eating initiatives. For example, the bill maintains the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program as fresh only, increases funding for the Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) Grant Program, and creates a Harvesting Health Pilot Program. The National Farm to School Network Policy Team continues to look for opportunities to advocate for important farm to school priorities when the bill draft comes to the full Senate floor. 


Farm to School in the News
West Virginia serves local in summer meals
School nutrition professionals in a West Virginia district are working to include local food in summer meals. "The students get to try different varieties of tomatoes, different varieties of radishes, cucumbers, carrots, everything that I can get my hands on. If they have the ability to bring it to me, then we are using it in this program,” said Kanawha County Schools Child Nutrition Director Diane Miller. (WOWK-TV)

4th Annual Northeast Farm to School Institute kicks off
Twelve Northeast school teams are gathering this summer to build Farm to School action plans for the next academic year at the Annual Northeast Farm to School Institute, offered by Shelburne Farms and NOFA-VT. Over eight years, the Institute has supported farm to school programs at 74 schools and districts, reaching over 54,000 Northeast students. (Shelburne Farms

Texas Farm Fresh program expands to summer
The Texas Department of Agriculture's Farm Fresh program, which provides locally produced food for school meals, is expanding to include summer-meal programs across the state. About 40% of Texas schools participate in the program, which is supported by the US Department of Agriculture. (KXAN-TV

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: 6/12/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, June 12, 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. Chef Ann Foundation Recipe Contest
Chef Ann Foundation partnered up with The Dannon Company, LLC to create a recipe contest featuring yogurt! Get your recipe used in schools across the country. Submit your recipe before June 30th. Learn more here

2. 2018 Chefs Collaborative & Niman Ranch Scholarship
This Scholarship is a rare opportunity to attend an exclusive, invite-only farmer celebration with Chefs Collaborative Members, farmers, and food professionals who are committed to responsibly-raised meat. In addition to being a special weekend with like-minded colleagues, previous Scholarship recipients share that this experience has helped them Change Menus, Change Lives. The Scholarship covers travel, lodging and meals and it is open to current Members of Chefs Collaborative. The deadline to apply is July 3. Learn more here


Webinars & Events
1. NFSN WEBINAR Fundraising for Farm to School
June 19, 3-4pm ET
Fundraising for farm to school can be challenging. Join us to learn about different opportunities and avenues to fundraise for farm to school activities. This webinar will be led by Lea Madry, National Farm to School Network Development Director, and is open to the public. Register here.

2. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics in Farm to School: Farm to Summer
July 12, 2pm ET
The USDA’s Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) anticipates providing more than 200 million free meals to children across the U.S. when school is out of session this summer. The seasonality and flexibility of SFSP create a perfect opportunity to highlight local products and incorporate food education. Join this webinar to learn about USDA farm to summer resources and hear from National Farm to School Network Core Partners  about innovative farm to summer initiatives taking place across the country. This webinar is open to the public and will be recorded and archived for future viewing. Register here

3. Registration Open: 2018 Montana Farm to School Summit
September 13-14 // Missoula, MT
Registration is now open for the 2018 Montana Farm to School Summit: Cultivating Connections, held on September 13-14, 2018 at University of Montana in Missoula. Learn and share how schools and programs are cultivating connections across Montana through the core elements of farm to school--serving local foods, school gardens, and nutrition, agriculture, and food education. Workshops, field trips, and networking opportunities will provide inspiration, ideas, and resources. Anim Steel, co-founder of Real Food Challenge will provide an inspiring keynote address which is also open to the public. The conference features presenters from across Montana and the country. Learn more and register here


Research & Resources
1. Seeking Information: Organic Practices in Farm to School
The National Farm to School Network is seeking information about and examples of schools/districts incorporating organic practices into farm to school initiatives. This could include purchasing certified organic and/or organically grown or raised products, educating students about organic practices, or using organic (or certified organic) gardening practices. Please complete this form with contact information for example schools/districts. The National Farm to School Network may contact these schools/districts for more information or to request their participation in a case study. For more information, or if you are unable to access the Google Form, contact Lacy Stephens, National Farm to School Network Program Manager, at lacy@farmtoschool.org.


Policy Updates
1. Senate Ag Committee Shares Draft Farm Bill
On June 7, the Senate Agriculture Committee released its draft farm bill. While no farm to school priorities have been included in this draft, the bill does show support for local & regional food systems. (Read in-depth analysis of this bill on the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition’s blog.) The bill is expected to be marked-up / amended by the full Agriculture Committee on June 13. The National Farm to School Network’s Policy Team continues to be actively engaged as the farm bill process progresses, and is committed to advocating for policies that support farm to school priorities.

2. NASDA Gives Support to Farm to School Priorities

The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NASDA) has sent a letter to the Chairman and Ranking Members of the House Agriculture, Senate Agriculture, and House Education and the Workforce Committees in support of two of the Nation Farm to School Networks federal policy priorities: Geographic Preference and increasing funding for the USDA Farm to School Grant Program from $5 million to $15 million. The National Farm to School Network values the partnership of NASDA and numerous individual State Departments of Agriculture in ensuring that locally grown and produced foods are part of school meals. Together, we recognize the importance of connecting students with their agricultural communities and giving local producers the opportunity to supply the nutritious foods students consume while at school. We look forward to continuing our partnership with NASDA to ensure these farm to school priorities are elevated in the House and Senate over the coming months. NASDA's full letter of support can be read here


Jobs & Opportunities
1. Farm to School Supervisor, Oakland Unified (Oakland, CA) 
The Farm to School Supervisor will manage the administration and operations of school site produce markets, implement the program’s procurement policies and practices, and promote Oakland Unified School District’s Farm to School Program. Learn more here


Farm to School in the News
Grand Traverse Band, students partner to plant traditional Native American garden
The Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa & Chippewa Indians is teaming up with a northern Michigan school to grow the student's knowledge of ancient gardening techniques. The band and the TBA-ISD Farm-to-school Program are working with TCAPS' Central Grade School to create a three-sisters garden behind the school. (Up North Live)

Iowa students grow vegetable, pollinator gardens
Roughly 100 kids were busy planting a garden in the heat at Riverside Elementary in Sioux City, IA at the end of May. The students started by planting flowers and carrots in the garden plot, just across the street from the school. The flowers help attract pollinating insects to garden, in it's 6th growing season. Last year the kids grew just under 2,000 lbs. of produce and close to 2-tons at all three school gardens. (Siouxland News

Farm to School program teaches Washington kids about food systems, farming
St. Basil Academy students traveled to Jimenez Family Farm to hear Filipe Jimenez’s story about becoming a farmer. The kids experienced picking, washing and packaging asparagus for market, while asking plenty of questions. (Union Bulletin

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: 6/5/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, June 05, 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. Request for Technical Assistance Proposals: Approaches to Reducing Consumption of Sugar
The Harvard Law School Food Law and Policy Clinic (FLPC), with support from the Laura and John Arnold Foundation, is launching a new initiative to identify locally-supported policies that will reduce sugar consumption and build capacity for policy change. FLPC is offering pro bono technical assistance to community organizations, food policy councils, and local and state government entities across the United States interested in implementing innovative sugar-reduction policies. A request for proposals application is open until July 31, 2018. Learn more here

2. Chef Ann Foundation Recipe Contest
Chef Ann Foundation partnered up with The Dannon Company, LLC to create a recipe contest featuring yogurt! Get your recipe used in schools across the country. Submit your recipe before June 30th. Learn more here


Webinars
1. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics Webinar: State Farm to School Positions
THIS WEEK - June 7, 2-3pm ET
State-supported farm to school positions within state agencies and Extension offices offer vital leadership and support to further institutionalize the farm to school movement. Join this webinar to learn about a new resource from the National Farm to School Network which highlights the growth and prevalence of state-supported farm to school positions and offers tools, resources and best practices for advocating for and maintaining state positions. Hear from NFSN Core Partners as they share their success, challenges and lessons learned and take away practical steps to advancing state-supported positions. Register here.

2. NFSN WEBINAR Fundraising for Farm to School
June 19, 3-4pm ET
Fundraising for farm to school can be challenging. Join us to learn about different opportunities and avenues to fundraise for farm to school activities. This webinar will be led by Lea Madry, National Farm to School Network Development Director, and is open to the public. Register here.

3. Good Food, Good Jobs: Working for a Just Food System
June 6, 12-1pm ET
In this webinar presented by Community Food Centres Canada and the Metcalf Foundation, we’ll ask how do we make food jobs good jobs? What are the strategies and demands within the food movement that could lead to good jobs? Labour market policy expert Tom Zizys will present compelling ideas and successes from the labour movement that could benefit the food movement. Sonia Singh, Leadership Development Coordinator at the Food Chain Workers Alliance, will bridge the food and labour divide to explore current challenges, inspiring examples, and new possibilities for good food jobs. Register here


Research & Resources
1. Oregon's Farm Field Trip Toolkit
The Oregon Farm to School and School Garden Network recently updated and revised its Farm Field Trip Toolkit for educators. The Toolkit is a step-by-step guide for implementing successful farm field trips, with a new focus on tools for educating students about the important role of farmworkers in our food system. The Toolkit also includes: field trip activities; supplemental classroom lessons; visuals and handouts; relevant educational standards; and, evaluation tools. View the toolkit here

2. Inside the Push to Bring Racial Equity to Land Grant Universities
Academics and food systems advocates are working from within public universities to acknowledge and address 150 years of structural racism.  The shift this group is advocating might sound symbolic, but it has the potential to impact the way hundreds of thousands of students are educated every year. Read more on Civil Eats


Job Opportunities
1. Policy Specialists, National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (Washington, D.C.) 
National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition is currently seeking candidates for three Policy Specialist positions. These positions are located at NSAC’s DC office on Capitol Hill and are full-time exempt positions. Learn more here

2. Marketing & Communications Coordinator, Green Plate Special (Seattle, WA)
Green Plate Special seeks a Marketing and Communications Coordinator who will creatively communicate the story and mission of GPS through visual and written communications and design. Learn more here

3. Executive Director, Blue Sky Funders (Oakland, CA or remote) 
Blue Sky Funders Forum seeks an executive director to serve as the chief executive of Blue Sky, with primary responsibility for shaping its vision and strategic direction, managing day-to-day activities and operations, and attracting new partners, funders, and members. Learn more here


Farm to School in the News
Oregon school gardens teach math, science and the delights of fresh fruit and vegetables
Oregon school gardens have more than doubled since 2012, according to surveys by Rick Sherman, Oregon Department of Education Farm to School coordinator and NFSN Oregon Core Partner. Sherman has mapped 673 school gardens and fostered 12 regional hubs across the state. According to research, garden-based education improves science, math and language arts learning, as well as improved student food behavior. (Oregon School Boards Association)

New York Students Eat 100% Local for New York Food Day
“As a result of the farm to school initiative and local foods day we were able to pilot the purchase and processing of an all-beef all-local hotdog,” said Martin Broccoli, Agricultural Economic Development Specialist, CCE. “We were able to do it at a price point that fit within the budget guidelines and captured economic impact that normally leaves our community. This is a big win for school lunch.” (Oneida Daily Dispatch)

Let it grow: Connecticut students learn to garden
Growing lettuce requires a lot of work, more than 1,900 students across Stamford, Conn. learned as part of the Eighth Annual Lettuce Challenge. More than 71 classrooms at 18 schools participated in this year’s competition, which gave students six weeks to grow heads of buttercrunch lettuce. The three best plants from each classroom were submitted for judging by local horticulture experts. (Stamford 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.

This Week in Farm to School: 5/29/18

NFSN Staff Tuesday, May 29, 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. Farm to ECE Funding Opportunity – Act Now to Leverage Funds in Your State
The federal budget passed in March 2018 included historic increases for key federal early care and education programs, notably the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF), which funds the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) program, was increased by $2.37 billion. Some of this new influx of funding will be used for quality improvements to early care and education that can include farm to ECE initiatives. Review this new memo from the National Farm to School Network and the Policy Equity Group for more information and ways to take action in your state. For more information, contact Lacy Stephens, Program Manager at the National Farm to School Network, at lacy@farmtoschool.org or Soumya Bhat, Director of Early Childhood Equity Initiatives at the Policy Equity Group, soumyab@policyequity.com


Webinars
1. NFSN WEBINAR Trending Topics Webinar: State Farm to School Positions
June 7, 2-3pm ET
State-supported farm to school positions within state agencies and Extension offices offer vital leadership and support to further institutionalize the farm to school movement. Join this webinar to learn about a new resource from the National Farm to School Network which highlights the growth and prevalence of state-supported farm to school positions and offers tools, resources and best practices for advocating for and maintaining state positions. Hear from NFSN Core Partners in South Carolina, Missouri and Oregon as they share their success, challenges and lessons learned and take away practical steps to advancing state-supported positions. Register here.

2. NFSN WEBINAR Fundraising for Farm to School
June 19, 3-4pm ET
Fundraising for farm to school can be challenging. Join us to learn about different opportunities and avenues to fundraise for farm to school activities. This webinar will be led by Lea Madry, National Farm to School Network Development Director, and is open to the public. Register here.

3. Good Food, Good Jobs: Working for a Just Food System
June 6, 12-1pm ET
In this webinar presented by Community Food Centres Canada and the Metcalf Foundation, we’ll ask how do we make food jobs good jobs? What are the strategies and demands within the food movement that could lead to good jobs? Labour market policy expert Tom Zizys will present compelling ideas and successes from the labour movement that could benefit the food movement. Sonia Singh, Leadership Development Coordinator at the Food Chain Workers Alliance, will bridge the food and labour divide to explore current challenges, inspiring examples, and new possibilities for good food jobs. Register here


Research & Resources
1. Simone Washington Teaches Students About Creating Consensus and Setting Differences Aside
How do stakeholders find common ground when they share the same goals but hold vastly different opinions? Simone Washington, the social mission strategy and policy manager at Ben & Jerry’s Homemade and NFSN Advisory Board member, will share a pragmatic and productive approach to building consensus in her workshop, “How to Become Allies Fighting the Same System, Role Play, Power Analytics, Conflict and Resolution Techniques” and the University of Vermont’s Breakthrough Leaders for Sustainable Food Systems Program in June. In this blog, Washington discusses the art of building consensus. 

2. Join the #GirlsAre Movement
In honor of National Physical Fitness and Sports month, the National Farm to School Network has joined the Alliance for a Healthier Generation for #GirlsAre, a nationwide campaign to empower girls to celebrate their athleticism and get moving. Sign the #GirlsAre pledge today at girlsare.org and follow along on social media using the hashtag #GirlsAre through Friday, June 1.


Job Opportunities 
1. Executive Director of Nutrition Services and Warehouse, Oakland Unified School District (Oakland, CA) 
The Executive Director of Nutrition Services and Warehouse will plan, organize, control, and direct the District’s Nutrition Services Program. This is a great opportunity for a Food Service Director interested in opening OUSD’s new Central Kitchen and building on the district’s strong Farm to School program. Learn more here


Farm to School in the News
Utah students tour farms during Farm Field Days
Events like Farm Field Days are designed to teach children about the inner workings of the farm. In one workshop, second-graders got a chance to sample fresh milk after learning how cows make milk. Another activity allowed students to make a “living necklace” by tying a capsule with a wheat seed, water and cotton inside to learn how crops grow. (Herald Journal

Colorado students learn to cook, grow food used in recipes
A program at a Denver Public School is a hit with kids and their parents. Marie L. Greenwood Academy has a Cooking from the Garden class, where students cook in the classroom first and then plant the crops of the foods they just ate - so when students harvest when they return in August, they’ll know how to prepare healthy dishes from the garden bounty. (CBS 4 Denver

North Carolina students serve up fresh veggies, honey, eggs from school’s garden
Students in West Marion Elementary’ s Garden Club showed off their green thumbs by preparing a farm-to-table meal for parents, volunteers and community members. The menu consisted of a vegetarian stew or honey burgers with honey bacon, potato salad, cole slaw and strawberry cheesecake for dessert served with fresh honey tea or lemon water. "We grew almost everything we are serving,” said student Colin Ivy. (McDowellNews.com)

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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