The Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 Team Nutrition Training Grants assisted state agencies in conducting and evaluating nutrition education, training and technical assistance activities that supported implementation of nutrition standards for meals and snacks offered through the child nutrition programs. For more information, please contact TeamNutrition@USDA.gov.
Recipients of FY 2017 Team Nutrition Training Grants:
The Arizona Department of Education (ADE) implemented a multilevel intervention to strengthen local school wellness policies of three Local Educational Agencies (LEAs). These LEAs designated Wellness Coordinators who provided training and technical assistance to help schools implement and assess their local school wellness policy. The ADE also supported nutrition education in the classroom by using Team Nutrition’s Serving Up MyPlate materials and engaged students in building school environments that promoted nutritious food choices.
The Iowa Department of Education (DOE) supported and improved healthy child care environments throughout the state by encouraging healthy habits to start early. The Iowa DOE provided trainings to child care centers and family child care homes on updated Child and Adult Care Food Program meal pattern requirements and ways to incorporate locally-grown foods at meals and snacks. Additionally, Team Nutrition’s Grow It, Try It, Like It! nutrition education kit was used to encourage children to try new foods. Parents and the community were also engaged in efforts to support healthy child care environments.
The Kansas State Department of Education (KSDE) engaged over 20,000 students in nutrition education activities utilizing Team Nutrition’s Discover MyPlate and Serving Up My Plate. The KSDE hosted regional Students Leading Wellness into Action workshops to support students taking leadership roles in wellness policy development and implementation. They also used Team Nutrition’s Local School Wellness Policy Outreach Toolkit to engage parents and the community to create healthy school environments. Additionally, the KSDE offered Culinary Champions Classes: Farm to Plate in Our State and materials on menu planning. These efforts assisted over 300 school nutrition professionals with using Kansas-grown products, offering a greater variety of vegetables and decreasing the sodium content of school meals. New menus were also developed to provide ideas for alternate meal delivery methods, such as breakfast-after-the-bell and grab-and-go meal options.
The Louisiana Department of Education (LDOE) partnered with the Louisiana Department of Health to address the training needs of school nutrition professionals in preparing nutritious meals that appealed to students. They delivered culinary skills trainings to approximately 650 school nutrition professionals. These trainings improved attendees’ food preparation skills and provided strategies for increasing students’ selection of dark-green, red and orange vegetables and legumes. Fifteen schools were awarded sub-grants to strengthen local school wellness policy implementation and engagement using Team Nutrition’s Local School Wellness Policy Outreach Toolkit.
The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) trained school nutrition professionals on implementing student-centered school meal programs and engaged students in making cafeteria changes that encouraged healthy choices. Students also received nutrition education using MyPlate materials. The MDE worked with community partners to provide regional school wellness trainings and an online wellness program to over 900 Michigan school nutrition professionals. Attendees were trained to become school wellness leaders utilizing Team Nutrition’s Local School Wellness Policy Outreach Toolkit.
The Minnesota Department of Education (MDE) developed and implemented a school breakfast promotion and training campaign across 676 school food authorities (SFAs) and provided culinary training to 45 school nutrition professionals. The MDE also developed a wellness training cohort for wellness teams in 6 school districts to strengthen their wellness policies and engaged staff and the community in school wellness efforts using Team Nutrition’s Local School Wellness Policy Outreach Toolkit. Additionally, Serving Up MyPlate lessons were taught to over 240 elementary students who learned about the benefits of fruits and vegetables, MyPlate food groups and increasing physical activity.
The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) provided nutrition education and gardening activities to 24 child care centers and family child care homes using Team Nutrition’s Grow It, Try It, Like It! materials. Child care providers also received training on planning meals to meet the updated Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) meal pattern requirements and how to include more Missouri-grown fruits and vegetables on their menus. Participants received technical assistance and sub-grants to assist with taste testing activities, family engagement and nutrition education. The Missouri DHSS’s Culinary Skills Institute for the CACFP provided hands-on learning experiences on menu planning and food preparation, which helped to enhance child care providers’ abilities to implement the updated CACFP meal pattern requirements.
The Montana Office of Public Instruction (OPI) provided several workshops to expand culinary techniques and menu planning skills to 174 school nutrition professionals. They also implemented the Harvest of the Month program and Team Nutrition’s Discover MyPlate lessons and reached over 14,000 students through these efforts. In addition, training on school wellness policies and best practice strategies were provided to over 570 school staff and community leaders.
The Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) provided a total of 42 activities to child care providers, which impacted a total of 9,030 children. The RIDE trained child care providers to prepare meals that met the updated Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) meal pattern requirements and also incorporated Rhode Island-grown products. Additionally, the RIDE collaborated with several community nutrition partners to expand their reach through events that provide recipes and cooking demonstrations for parents, caregivers and the community.
The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) provided training and technical assistance on creating healthy school environments to 500 school nutrition professionals and other school staff in all 132 of Virginia’s school districts. Eight garden-themed regional workshops were conducted using peer-mentors (Cultivators) and subject matter experts (Tillers) to focus on culinary skills with farm fresh produce and how to implement Team Nutrition’s Dig In! and The Great Garden Detective Adventure lessons. The Cultivators and Tillers provided leadership and technical assistance that supported development of healthy school environments throughout Virginia, using Team Nutrition’s Local School Wellness Policy Outreach Toolkit.
The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) provided training to 212 school nutrition professionals on strategies to increase meal program participation and student engagement. The Wisconsin DPI also provided a School Wellness Workshop to 19 school food authorities (SFAs). Overall, 4,798 students participated in activities or nutrition education programs to increase their nutrition knowledge. Additionally, 183 schools participated in activities to improve National School Lunch Program (NSLP) participation rates. Forty-two percent of participant schools increased their NSLP participation rates.