This Week in farm to school: 11/08/16
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. Schoolyard Garden Grants
This grant provides up to $1,000 for plants, gardening equipment, curriculum, staff development and anything else that fosters connections between K-12 students and nature. Schools may design their own garden, enhance an existing garden, or better use an existing garden. Applications are due on Tuesday, December 16, 2016. Learn more and apply here.
Webinars & Events
1. Healthy and Ready to Learn: State ESSA Plans to Support Student Health and Wellness Webinar
Nov. 17, 11am-12pm CT
The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) recognizes the need for schools to support the whole child and specifically acknowledges the importance of student health and wellness. To help school health advocates and others take advantage of this unprecedented opportunity to integrate health and wellness into education policy and practice, Healthy Schools Campaign and Alliance for Healthier Generation will be releasing Healthy and Ready to Learn: ESSA State Plans to Support Student Health and Wellness. This webinar is an opportunity to learn about this important resource and connect with other advocates working to advance student health and school wellness through ESSA state plans. Register here.
2. The Role of State, Local and Tribal Governments
Nov. 17, 3-4:30pm EST
The National Prevention Strategy (NPS) is a guide for improving the health and well-being of every American by shifting the nation from a focus on sickness and disease to one based on prevention and wellness. This webinar series will highlight ways various partner groups are successfully addressing two key NPS priorities, Healthy Eating and Active Living, in their communities. The next webinar will focus on the role of state, local and tribal governments. Register here.
Research & Resources
1. New FSMA resources from NSAC
The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition been hearing questions from produce farmers about food safety training and, in particular, whether they need to sign up for a training focused on FDA’s Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) rule for produce farms right away. The short answer is: probably not, but you should start considering your options now! If you grow fruit or vegetables and have questions, check out this just-released FAQ from the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition here. It covers such questions as: "Do I have to take a FSMA training?", How do I know if I am covered by the FSMA Produce Rule?", and more!
2. Real Food Standards 2.0
The Real Food Standards were researched over the course of 18 months, with input of 100+ industry experts, farmers, ranchers, fishermen, food service operators, and students. 130 certification and label claims were vetted; 40 now qualify as 'real food' in the final version of the Real Food Guide. Check out our most comprehensive compilation of criteria and certifications to date. Learn more here.
Jobs & Opportunities
1. Director, USDA Office of Community Food Systems
After five successful years of leading USDA's farm to school portfolio and launching a new Office of Community Food Systems, Deborah Kane is moving on to new adventures. USDA is currently seeking an equally driven, strategic and nimble leader to guide this high impact program through its next chapter of development. The director must demonstrate extensive experience implementing and managing community food systems or farm to school programming and have proven effective working relationships with community food systems or farm to school practitioners and coalitions. The director oversees a dynamic team that manages the USDA Farm to School Grant Program, conducts and disseminates research, and provides training and technical assistance related to community food systems in child nutrition programs. Applications are due Nov. 15. Learn more here.
2. Plate to Politics and Communications Coordinator, Women Food & Ag Network
WFAN seeks a Plate to Politics and Communications Coordinator to join its team. This position will coordinate WFAN’s Plate to Politics program, and coordinate WFAN’s communications. Plate to Politics is WFAN’s training program for emerging leaders in healthy food and farming movement. WFAN’s communication efforts are focused on amplifying the voices of WFAN members and ensuring that the media narrative of food and agriculture includes women’s voices and our values of sustainability and food justice. Learn more here.
3. Outreach Assistant Intern, Union of Concerned Scientists
Do you want to make food more sustainable? The Union of Concerned Scientists seeks an Outreach Intern to support its campaign to bring more funding to sustainable agriculture. In this paid, nine-month internship, you will organize and engage scientists, experts, and supporters through online and offline activities, coordinate outreach events, and assist with research and writing for UCS materials. Apply by November 21. Learn more here.
Farm to school in the news
“Boat-to-School” Programs Source Fresh Seafood for Students
“This is a lesson farm-to-school advocates learned in the apple industry: People started selling cider apples, the really small ones, to schools because they were perfect for little kids,” says Simca Horwitz, the Eastern Massachusetts director for the Massachusetts Farm to School project, reflecting on similar uses of underutilized, abundant fish in east coast schools. “In a lot of ways, schools turning to local seafood today is where we were with land-based agriculture about 10 years ago.” Civil Eats
Local restaurants partner with schools for veggies
Mississippi restaurant customers are eating up kale grown by local second-grade students. First-grader Celia Johnston said she loves working in the garden, and she’s especially excited that the vegetables she and her classmates have grown will be put to good use at local businesses. “Our food is very good, and I think people will like to eat it,” Johnston said. Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal
Farm-to-school nutrition comes full circle
Farm to school efforts are taking root in West Virginia. Mason County schools are leading the way for efforts happening across the state, serving 4,200 students locally grown peppers, cucumbers, tomatoes, lettuces, melon, potatoes, eggs, ground beef and pork. In addition to an innovate food service director, the district has wide support from the school board, school superintendent, and West Virginia University County Extension. Charleston Gazette-Mail
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.