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Newburgh Schools Have Number Three School Breakfast Program for its Size According to National Survey
The Newburgh Enlarged City School District increased its standing by one place, as part of the annual Food Research & Action Center (FRAC) survey coming in 3rd in 2016-2017 and 4th during the previous 2015-2016 school year.
For their School Breakfast: Making it Work in Large Districts report, FRAC surveyed 75 of America’s large school districts across 34 states to analyze school breakfast participation, identify strategies that school districts can implement to increase participation, and highlight school districts that have taken steps to increase their school breakfast participation.
The Newburgh Enlarged City School District has offered free breakfast to all scholars since the 2015-2016 school year and began providing free lunch to all scholars during the 2016-2017 school year. The Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) provides an opportunity for districts in high poverty areas to provide free breakfast and lunch to all students without the encumbrance of collecting and processing school meal applications for free and reduced-price meals.
"Hunger and poor nutrition take valuable time away from the classroom where scholars should be focused on learning instead of their next meal. Providing a nutritious breakfast promotes equity among our students and allows parents to use precious time in the morning to prepare their students for school, instead of rushing to make breakfast. I am thankful for the initiative and drive of our Food Services team to secure grant and government monies to help ensure our scholars in the Newburgh Enlarged City School District are well nourished without feeling stigmatized. It is an honor to be recognized by this national study. It shows that the hard work by our team is paying off and the positive impact on our scholars is making a difference." Dr. Roberto Padilla, Superintendent of the Newburgh Enlarged City School District
“Offering breakfast outside of the traditional cafeteria setting helps us make sure that hunger is not a barrier for students reaching their full potential. We are so thankful for our administrators, teachers, and staff who continue to support the growth of the breakfast program in Newburgh. We continue to look for innovative approaches to nourish as many students as we can each day and strive to set our scholars up for success in every way that we can.” Mrs. Caitlin Lazarski, Food Service Director for the Newburgh Enlarged City School District
The continued rise in school breakfast participation can be attributed to more school districts adopting innovative strategies that effectively address the barriers to participation, including late buses, morning commutes, tight household budgets, and social stigma. Efforts to increase breakfast participation pay off — school breakfast leads to improved dietary intake, reduced food insecurity, better test scores, improved student health, and fewer distractions in the classroom throughout the morning.
These strategies include breakfast after the bell, which incorporates breakfast into the school day, and offering breakfast to all students free of charge. Breakfast after the bell service models, such as breakfast in the classroom, “grab and go,” and second chance breakfast (which allows students to eat breakfast later in the morning) all make it easier for students to access school breakfast.
As more school districts expand these winning strategies, the gap in the number of low-income students reached by the School Breakfast Program compared to the number in need is decreasing. More students are reaping the benefits of school breakfast, including higher academic achievement and test scores, elevated health and nutrition, and reduced absenteeism, tardiness, and behavior referrals. By breaking down barriers to school breakfast participation, school districts build up all their students’ potential for success.
On Tuesday, FRAC released School Breakfast: Making it Work in Large School Districts (pdf), a companion report to the School Breakfast Scorecard: School Year 2016-2017. Of the 75 large school districts surveyed for this report, 22 achieved FRAC’s benchmark of serving 70 low-income children with school breakfast for every 100 receiving school lunch. A number of the top-performing school districts — Los Angeles Unified School District, San Antonio Independent School District, and Newburgh Enlarged City School District, among others — serve a particularly high proportion of students from low-income households.
ATTENTION: Are your scholars or colleagues doing something great? Please contact the district Communications Strategist, Cassie Sklarz (firstname.lastname@example.org). We’d love to visit your class or event and/or post your pictures and recap to highlight the amazing accomplishments throughout our district!