Food Desert Zone Recommendations Include PTAs

The General Assembly’s House Legislative Research Committee on Food Desert Zones adopted its findings and recommendations yesterday.  Parent Teacher Associations were included in both the findings and recommendations.  The Committee’s findings on school gardens and school breakfasts are as follows:

Finding on School Gardens

School gardens are an important tool for helping students be involved and connected with healthy foods. However, some Local Education Agencies (LEAs) have expressed confusion over the rules for operating school gardens and what can be done with the produce grown in school gardens. The Department of Public Instruction should develop a guidance document on the use of the produce grown in school gardens relative to the school nutrition program and use of the school-garden produce in the classroom for instruction and tasting purposes. The Department should distribute this guidance document to LEAs, school boards, and PTA units across the State.

Recommendation on School Breakfasts

The Committee encourages Local Education Agencies (LEAs) to seek multiple and innovative ways of increasing school breakfast participation in their schools as an additional means of caring for and nurturing our public school children, and the Committee encourages LEAs to support universal breakfast programs, and to consider providing breakfast in the classroom during appropriate instructional and educational activities as one of the multiple options for removing barriers to participation in the school breakfast program. LEAs should utilize the resources of the Parent Teacher Association to help implement innovative school breakfast programs if necessary.

The Committee recommends the Co-Chairs submit the Committee’s findings and recommendations on school breakfast to the Chairman of the North Carolina State Board of Education in the form of a letter.

Link to the full report: