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National Farm to School Network

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This Week in Farm to School: 2/11/20

NFSN Staff Tuesday, February 11, 2020
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. FY20 Team Nutrition Training Grants for School Meal Recipe Development
Deadline: April 3
A Request for Applications for the FY 2020 Team Nutrition Training Grant for School Meal Recipe Development is now available through Grants.gov. FNS expects to award approximately $5.2 million to state agencies (up to $300,000 per state) that administer the National School Lunch Program. The FY 2020 Team Nutrition Training Grant for School Meal Recipe Development will assist states in helping schools offer meals supported by recipes that utilize local agricultural products and reflect local food preparation practices and taste preferences. Using grant funds, state agencies will be able to develop nutritious and tasty recipes that utilize local agricultural products and reflect local food preparation practices and taste preferences. An informational webinar will be hosted on Feb. 11. View the Request for Applications here

2. Action for Healthy Kids Grant
Deadline: April 3
Action for Healthy Kids' (AFHK) is providing schools the resources for students to eat better, stay physically active and be better prepared to learn. AFHK is offering two grant opportunities: Game on Grants for $1,000-$2,500 and Parents for Healthy Kids Grants for $1,000. Learn more and apply here


Webinars & Events
1. NFSN EVENT Register Today! 10th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference
April 21-23 // Albuquerque, NM
The 10th National Farm to Cafeteria Conference is just three months away, and now is the time to start planning! With 40 skill-building workshops, 10 experiential field trips, inspiring keynote addresses, valuable networking time, and a showcase of New Mexico’s vibrant local food culture, this biennial event hosted by the National Farm to School Network is an unparalleled opportunity to learn and network with food systems leaders from across the country. Early Bird registration is NOW OPEN!! Save $50 on regular registration pricing and secure a seat on your first-choice field trip! Visit farmtoschool.org/conference to learn more.

2. Life Lab: Educator Workshops at the Garden Classroom
Spring - Summer 2020 // Santa Cruz, CA
Life Lab offers trainings and workshops for educators in their Garden Classroom on the UCSC CASFS Farm. Upcoming trainings this spring and summer include: School Garden Program Sustainability, The Growing Classroom, and Plant to Plate. Learn more here

3. 2020 California Farm to School and School Garden Conference
March 26-27 // San Diego, CA
Registration is now open for the California Department of Food and Agriculture Office of Farm to Fork's (CDFA-F2F) 2020 California Farm to School and School Garden Conference. The conference brings together farm to school practitioners from across the school food and education spaces, offering professional development, networking and the sharing of best practices. It is hosted by CDFA-F2F in partnership with Community Health Improvement Partners in San Diego. Learn more and register here

4. Garden-To-Plate: A Day of Food Workshops
March 7 // Chaska, MN
A one day workshop for teachers, school administrators, school food service professionals, students, and all those passionate about actualizing farm to school are invited to attend this workshop to learn how to, with sparse staff time and limited resources, ensure maximum production of safe food for your efforts. This day of workshops will bring together the latest research and best practices to ensure Minnesota community food growers bring a bounty of safe produce to their communities. Learn more and register here.


Research & Resources
1. EQUITY February is Black History Month
February is Black History Month, a dedicated time to pay attention to the power and resilience of the Black community. Throughout February, National Farm to School Network is sharing stories, resources, articles and more that highlight histories and narratives that often go overlooked. This week, we encourage you to explore Food First's multi-authored series, Dismantling Racism in the Food System, and listen to The Sporkful's "The Order That Changed The World" podcast, which explores the famous 1960 civil rights protest at a segregated lunch counter in Greensboro, North Carolina. 

2. Greenhouse Manual: An Introductory Guide for Educators
United States Botanic Garden, the National Association for Appropriate Technology and City Blossoms developed this freely available manual in response to an expressed need to help guide would-be greenhouse managers and educators as their schools explore ways to build new infrastructure or reinvest in existing greenhouse facilities. Its purpose is to support and expand the planting and use of school gardens and greenhouses, farm to school activities, and the integration of plant science in the curriculum. The manual lays out a basic understanding of greenhouses, how to integrate greenhouses into lessons, and how to use greenhouses in classroom curricula and after-school activities. View the resource here


Policy News
1. Minnesota Department of Agriculture Allocates Funding for First-Time Dedicated Farm to School Staff
Two farm to school policy wins were achieved in the 2019 Minnesota legislative session. Funding was allocated to create a new, permanent position, Regional Marketing Specialist, with the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA). That position, Regional Marketing Specialist, is now filled by Helen Schnoes. With MDA Helen will focus on supporting farm to school across Minnesota as well as other state agriculture and food business marketing efforts, including the wholesale directory with Minnesota Grown. Read more here.

2. Hawai‘i Food Coalition Endorses Farm to School Bills
The Hawai‘i Local Food Coalition endorsed 10 bills they dubbed “pro-agriculture”. Executive Director of the Hawai‘i Farm Bureau and member of the LFC, Brian Miyamoto said the coalition carefully considered which bills to best support in relation to local food production. “It’s not always easy to build consensus across a diverse industry, but we all agreed on the importance of getting these bills into the end zone." The bills endorsed by the Local Food Coalition include establishing a P-20 agriculture education coordinator position and a two-year farm to school grant pilot program among others. Read more here.


Job Opportunities
1. Equity Consultant, National Farm to School Network (Remote)
National Farm to School Network is seeking an Equity Consultant to support initiatives aimed at advancing equity at the organizational and programmatic levels. Applicants are encouraged to apply early; applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the deadline of February 12. For more information, email Jenileigh Harris at jenileigh@farmtoschool.org.

2. Senior Outreach Specialist, The Common Market (Chicago, IL)
The Common Market is a nonprofit, multi-regional distributor that connects communities with good food from sustainable family farms. The Common Market seeks to explore replication of its successful model in Chicago, IL and is conducting an extensive search for its first employee in this region. The ideal candidate is highly motivated, results-driven, passionate about community and sustainable food, in addition to having the professionalism and experience to succeed in a demanding role that is critical to the success of the organization. Learn more and apply here.

3. 2020 Intertribal Agriculture Council Internship Opportunities
The Intertribal Agriculture Council (IAC) is recruiting innovative, collaborative, and focused high school and early college-aged youth that are passionate about promoting the regeneration of natural resources within their communities. Selected interns will engage in an 8-10 week paid internship between May and September 2020. This is a full-time, paid internship position. Each intern will experience a tailored learning plan to enhance their knowledge of natural resource management in Indian Country, exploring their strengths and improving their weaknesses. Learn more and apply here

4. FoodCorps Service Member Application Now Open
Applications are now open for the next class of FoodCorps AmeriCorps service members. Service members connect kids to healthy food in school, from the classroom to the garden to the cafeteria. Applicants are encouraged to apply early; applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until the deadline of March 13. Learn more here.


Farm to School in the News
Op-Ed: Why Are You Still Packing Lunch for Your Kids?
Jennifer Gaddis, an expert on school lunch policy, writes: While parents have been focusing on creating Instagram-friendly school lunches, the quality of cafeteria food has improved significantly. And when kids eat school lunch, they and their parents are supporting the efforts to improve the national program for current and future generations. (The New York Times)

Renowned Chefs to Spice up Food at Chicago Public School Cafeterias 
Chicago Public Schools has launched a brand new Chicago Chef Council — a panel of celebrated chefs who will contribute their culinary passion and creativity toward developing the daily breakfasts, lunches and after-school meals served by CPS’ Nutrition Support Services. They will also promote the CPS Farm to School program and engaging students and staff through demonstrations, in-café sampling and take-home recipes. (Chicago Sun-Times)

Minnesota District Serves More Local Foods
Through partnership with a local food hub and through direct outreach to farms, Prior Lake-Savage schools have been putting more local food on meal trays. Though, locally-grown food doesn’t do any good if the children don’t eat it. So every week, the schools offer a “Try-It Tuesday” experiment. Cafeteria staff walk around with samples of foods that might be unfamiliar like persimmons and artichoke hearts. The goal is to inspire students to make healthy and smart food choices not only in the schools, but also in homes. (CBS Minnesota)

Connecticut School Draws Students With Experiential Agriculture Program 
Shepaug Agriscience STEM Academy has been combating it's declining enrollment by offering students within and outside the school district experiential learning opportunities focused on animal, food, plant and power sciences. The academy has become a breeding ground of new life both literally and figuratively. Students rotate through “pathways” to study animal science; food products and processing systems; plant sciences; and power, structural and technical systems once every nine weeks. (U.S. News

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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