Exciting Things Happening in Our School Districts
Eating Right at School
Teaching the importance of nutrition and providing healthy food options for K-12 students
Healthy habits start early and can last a lifetime. We support comprehensive programming for K-12 students on good nutrition and physical activity.
More than one-third of children and adolescents are overweight, and few get enough physical activity. Learning early about the importance of nutritious foods and daily activity levels—and having healthy choices readily available during the school day—can make a lasting impact on individual students and the school system.
The Healthy Schools Project aims to provide learning opportunities for students to make healthy choices, to give children hands-on, sensory experiences with fresh fruits and vegetables, to explain to children the agricultural foundation of their food, to build a relationship between the school community and local agriculture, to support parents as they promote healthy choices with their children, and to promote buying in-season and local sustainably grown produce. Currently the Ventura Unified School District takes part in this project.
Food For Thought is a program that is currently working with the Ojai Unified School District to work toward getting seasonal, fresh and local produce into school meals. The organization is also working towards eliminating highly processed foods and minimizing food and landfill waste associated with school districts. Food For Thought also works toward providing students information about the importance of eating balanced meals and making healthy choices. The Garden Based Learning Program gives the opportunity for students to learn about making healthy choices outside the classroom. This program gives students the chance to get their hands dirty, learning how to weed, prune, and maintain school gardens.
The California Health and Longevity Institute is currently working with The Moorpark Unified School District to redesign lunch menus to include foods that are prepared onsite and include increased quantities of vegetables, fruits, whole grains, leaner protein, and less saturated fats and sodium.
The Produce Patch and The Fresh Fruit Basket are two programs introduced by the Conejo Valley Unified School District. The Produce Patch offers fresh fruit and vegetables every day at elementary school lunchs as a side item. The Fresh Fruit Basket provides a basket of whole fresh fruit, which allows students to grab a piece of fruit free of charge, during breaks in class in each school cafeteria.
Healthy Food Promotion is a program that the Conejo Valley Unified School District has implemented which provides students every month with a Healthy Food fruit or vegetable to try every month. These fruits and vegetables are harvested by a local farm project, Join the Farm.
Foodie the FoodBot is a kid’s nutritional learning and games resource that has been introduced by the the Oxnard School District. Foodie is an interactive tool that students can use to learn about the nutritional value of certain foods.
Health–e–Living Ventura County’s goal is to provide you useful information for teaching your child about managing their healthy lifestyle. The Oxnard School District is currently using the Health-e-Living program as a part of their Food and Nutrition lunch program.
Farm to School is a program that connects schools with local farms in order to serve healthy meals in cafeterias, improve student nutrition, provide health and nutrition education opportunities, and support California’s farmers. There are currently 6 Farm to School programs in Ventura County:
- The Community Alliance with Family Farmers
- The Conejo Valley Unified School District
- The Inner City Kitchen
- The Ojai Unified School District
- St. Helena Unified
- Ventura Unified School District
The Green Schools Initiative is an organization that works towards eliminating toxins, using resources sustainably, creating green spaces and buildings, serving healthy food, and teaching stewardship in our schools.
What You Can Do!
Rethinking School Lunch is a downloadable publication that provides ideas for changing your school meal programs, promoting health, and increasing ecological understanding.
Suggest Nutrition-Based Education Field Trips to your school: