RACINE — Students at Southern Local have been participating in the Spring Breakfast Challenge with other Ohio schools as well as participating in National School Breakfast Week. Grades Pre-K through grade 12 participated.
National School Breakfast Week (NSBW) is a week-long celebration of the school breakfast program. Member schools celebrate with events, special incentives and promotions to increase breakfast participation. Breakfast participation is a goal for many schools in the National School Lunch Program. NSBW is the perfect time to bring attention to the school breakfast program.
Breakfast participation at Southern improved 14.9 percent during the week, noted Lunchroom Supervisor Scott Wolfe: “We would hope that students would eat breakfast and lunch every day. Many of the servings are quality name brand products such as Bob Evans. It’s healthy, it’s tasty and it’s free.”
Goals of the NSBW program are:
- Increase student participation in the program
- Spread the message to parents that schools are serving healthy and tasty breakfasts at school
- Earn media coverage from local papers, blogs, and news media to improve awareness
- Connect with teachers and administrators at school to spread the word that school meals are healthy
Southern offers free breakfast for all students. “Our elementary numbers are significant, but yet we know that some kids that should be eating aren’t,” said Wolfe. “Breakfast is the fuel that kicks off the day and helps kids learn. Here’s where we need help from our parents in asking them to urge their kids to eat. The high school kids did a good job with the challenge, but on a daily basis the numbers are low. Our teachers did a great job promoting the week and so did much of the student body. ”
Incentives were given to classrooms and individual prizes were presented to students who were part of a drawing that included those who ate all five days. Brian Allen’s high school homeroom won the 9-12 challenge and Rachel Hupp’s Kindergarten homeroom won the elementary challenge.
Individual winners were Madison Fowler, Mason Baisden, Sammie Morris, Caden Hupp, Savannah Roush, Grace Lee, Izzy Klein, Braydon Essick, Austin Bare, Jordan Gilbride, Jared Myers, Matthew Hall, and Sydnee Morris. The grand prize winner was Caden Hupp.
Incentives were provided by the district, Scott Wolfe, and Tricia McNickle. McNickle took the contest one step further by rewarding another group of her students, K-3, who ate all five days during the breakfast challenge. Winners sponsored by Principal McNickle were Nevaeh Books, Bethany Roberts, Dravin Landis, Kaydance Stover, Tyrell Johnson, Jeremy Harmon, Emma Shuster, Garrett Collingsworth, Brenlan Kincaid, Ana Fellure, Skyler Allen, Ethan Rose, Peyton Milliron, Leland Parker, Bella Foley and Grand prize winner of a Hatchimal, Ana Fellure
In addition to the breakfast week, the Southern lunchroom and school counseling programs headed by Andrea Wiseman teamed up to have “Breakfast with a Buddy.” The “Breakfast with a Buddy” campaign concluded the Ohio School Breakfast Week Challenge and No One Eats Alone Day.
Students who eat breakfast have better nutrition, perform better in school, and have higher test scores and better behavior. Skipping breakfast hurts kids’ overall cognitive performance, which has a negative impact on their levels of alertness, attention, memory, problem-solving and mathematics skills.
By contrast, students who eat school breakfast have been shown, on average, to attend 1.5 more days of school per year and score 17.5 percent higher on standardized math tests. Ohio students can start their day ready to learn with a nutritious breakfast. The Ohio School Breakfast Challenge encourages all schools to give their students a great start to their day with a healthy breakfast. All schools offering the School Breakfast Program can participate in the Spring Challenge-February 1, through April 6.
Southern also offers a free school lunch to kids in Pre-School through the 8th grade. This is a free lunch every single day to all students as a result of the Community Eligibility Program or CEP. The kitchen staff has offered many new entrées this year including tortellini, chicken alfredo, various types of barbecue, chicken dishes, and homemade soups.