The Park Foundation approved a grant proposal for a Fresh Foods Initiative at TST BOCES to increase the amount fresh and nutritious food available in the Smith School cafeteria.
Providing increased access to produce and fresh foods impacts the nutrition of the nearly 300 students across eight different educational programs who eat meals in the Smith School cafeteria. The Fresh Foods Initiative also includes plans to increase agricultural education as well as vocational and career readiness skills in agriculture and landscaping, with a specific emphasis on access for students with disabilities.
The Park Foundation grant supports the cost of new trainings, food preparation materials, field trips to local farms and classroom supplies. New equipment will also allow food to be moved safely between rooms and buildings to bring hands-on nutritional experiences right into the classroom.
The initiative will seek out trainings on how to best leverage student autonomy and choice to increase their desire to experience diverse and healthy foods.
Due to safety protocols related to COVID-19, traditional methods of food preparation and serving have needed to adapt. The first steps of the Fresh Foods Initiative will be to improve access in the time of COVID by increasing capacity to safely prepare food and provide nutritional opportunities in the classroom.