Juneau to Proclaim October as Farm to School Month at Youth Leadership Conferenc
Monday, October 7, 2013
By Allyson Hagen
Juneau to Proclaim October as Farm to School Month at Youth Leadership Conference
Missoula, MT - Today, Superintendent Denise Juneau is signing an official proclamation that October is “Farm to School” month in the state of Montana. Juneau, an advocate for Farm to School programs, is a featured speaker at the Farm to Cafeteria Network’s Growing Leaders Youth Summit. Juneau will address the 150 high school-aged conference participants at 12:30 pm at the University of Montana in the University Center Ballroom.
“Farm to School programs have something for everyone because they can improve learning, nutrition, and local economies,” said Superintendent Denise Juneau. “Community-based agriculture has the potential for creating jobs, developing small business entrepreneurships and keeping precious dollars in the community.”
Farm to School programs aim to improve child nutrition by helping children understand and experience where their food comes from. It incorporates healthy, farm-fresh food in school meals and snacks, provides increased opportunity for garden-based learning, provides agriculture education across the curriculum, and strengthens community-wide connections to support Montana's local farmers and children’s well-being.
Schools across the state will be serving up healthy meals with locally- grown food and making visits to area farms in celebration of Farm to School month.
Superintendent Juneau continued, "Montana schools are improving access to fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains and local food. They are also working to educate students about the origins of food and healthy eating and to get students up and moving. Farm to School month is a great opportunity to draw attention to all this important work that is positively impacting the health of our students.”
The Office of Public Instruction, Montana Team Nutrition Program, Farm to Cafeteria Network, Montana FoodCorps, Eat Right Montana and other statewide partners have created a guide to help schools across Montana participate in Farm to School Month in their cafeterias, classrooms, and communities.
To download the Farm to School Month guide and for more information about Farm to School programs, visit http://opi.mt.gov/Farm2School.
Office of Public Instruction
Superintendent Denise Juneau
State of Montana
WHEREAS, Farm to School Programs connect Montana’s K-12 schools and local farms with the goal of serving healthy meals in school cafeterias to improve student nutrition and provide educational opportunities related to agriculture, health, and nutrition; and
WHEREAS, Farm to School Programs purchase local food for school meals and provide a market for local agricultural producers, bringing economic development opportunities to regional food and agricultural economies; and
WHEREAS, Montana's K-12 schools have been identified as a significant market for local and regional food products and can provide a way for local agricultural producers to grow their businesses to meet the demands of larger markets; and
WHEREAS, Farm to School Programs are expanding across the United States, with an estimated 8,900 K-12 schools participating in all 50 states; and
WHEREAS, Farm to School Programs are expanding across Montana's rural and urban school districts; and
WHEREAS, federal legislation designated October as national Farm to School Month for the purpose of promoting the importance of Farm to School activities among students, citizens, teachers and school administrators, state and federal agencies, and all concerned parties;
Now, Therefore, I, Denise Juneau, Superintendent of Public Instruction, do hereby proclaim October 2013 as
“FARM TO SCHOOL MONTH.”