About the Program
Whole Kids Foundation has joined forces with Chef Ann Foundation to help districts transition from highly processed meals to scratch cooking.
Get Schools Cooking will guide selected districts through this multi-year transformative journey that includes in-person workshops for food service directors, on-site assessment, recommendations, and strategic planning, along with peer-to-peer collaboration and access to a Technical/Equipment Assistance Grant. The program has a value of nearly $250,000 per participating district (depending on district size).
To apply, school districts must meet the following criteria:
- Be firmly committed to working towards a scratch-cooked and fresh whole foods approach to their meal programs.
- Demonstrate support for improvement from district leadership.
- Participate in the National School Lunch Program.
- Run a self-operated food service program.
Why is it important?
Serving children scratch-cooked meals allows districts to offer healthy and delicious breakfast and lunch, but it’s not always an easy task—there are financial, procurement, management, education, and staffing hurdles to jump over. Oftentimes, school districts need guidance from school food experts to overcome these challenges. According to a recent Pew study, directors whose school food programs prepared more foods from scratch and increased the use of salad bars were more likely to report that student participation rose. In addition, the guidelines implemented through this program support scratch cooking that is healthier and more nutritious than serving processed foods.
View a recent informational webinar highlighting grant details and one district's experience here.
How to Apply
For more information or questions on the Get Schools Cooking application process, visit ChefAnnFoundation.org or email Grants@WholeKidsFoundation.org with any questions.