By Scott Bolthouse | The Huron Hub
Published Feb. 14, 2020
Some healthier food choices are headed to the school meal program at Renton Junior High in New Boston.
Kellogg Company and No Kid Hungry, an organization that aims to end childhood hunger, awarded Renton Junior High a $5,000 grant as part of an initiative that rewards schools using creative ways to enhance meal programs and increase student participation.
Renton was among ten schools across the country that were rewarded through the initiative, called Elevate The Plate Challenge. A list of schools that won the award can be viewed here.
“We are grateful and honored to be a part of this opportunity with Kellogg’s and No Kid Hungry,” said Antonella Shock, Chartwells food service director at Huron School District. “This grant will enable more students to get the much-needed nourishment they need during the day.”
One of the day-to-day challenges for the Renton food service team is identifying new ways to get students excited about eating a school meal.
With that in mind, the school plans to purchase a refrigerated salad bar with the funds, which will offer students a wider variety of fresh produce, sourced from local farms.
Offering the salad bar will also coincide with the launch of Chartwells’ Mood Boost program, which uses mood icons (strong, alert, happy, calm, smart) to teach students about foods that will help them feel at their best through the day.
“We are proud to partner with No Kid Hungry to continue our work to expand school meal programs,” said Wendy Davidson, President of Kellogg’s Away From Home. “We’re also thrilled to celebrate the outstanding food service team at Renton Junior High who is leading the way in creating delicious, replicable approaches that encourage more kids to participate in and enjoy school meals.”
Having healthy meals available to school students is crucial, officials say.
According to the USDA, more than 11 million children in the United States live in what are called “food insecure” homes, where families don’t have enough food for every member to lead a healthy life.
“Three out of four public school teachers say students regularly come to school hungry,” said Jill Davis, chief revenue officer at No Kid Hungry. “But we know getting kids healthy meals at school is a critical step in ending childhood hunger once and for all in America.”