May 2013

mather--031-RCastagnaMay 30, 2013 – Superintendent Dr. Carol R. Johnson and students from the Mather Elementary School came together with Newman’s Own Foundation, the Food Research and Action Center (FRAC), Project Bread, New England Dairy and Food Council (NEDFC), state officials, and Boston native and former NFL player Jermaine Wiggins to celebrate Boston’s success of Breakfast in the Classroom.

With support from Newman’s Own Foundation, Boston Public Schools has implemented Breakfast in the Classroom in eight  elementary schools this year. As a result, an additional 600 children receive breakfast each day in our schools, a 49 percent increase in participation.

Research shows a range of benefits from offering Breakfast in the Classroom. In addition to fighting hunger, they include improved academic performance, less disruptive student behavior, fewer visits to the school nurse, and increased attendance.

“Ensuring our students are healthy and ready to learn is a top priority in the Boston Public Schools,” said Superintendent Johnson. “We have seen a high level of positive academic and health outcomes especially among low-income students in our schools that have implemented Breakfast in the Classroom.”


To guarantee that all children have a healthy start to their day, Boston Public Schools has made it a priority to improve participation in school breakfast, including the implementation of Universal Free Breakfast for all Boston Public Schools students by Michael R. Peck, Director of BPS Food and Nutrition Services.

“Breakfast in the Classroom is a simple and effective way to help address childhood hunger in this country while also contributing to positive education outcomes,” said Lisa Walker, managing director of Newman’s Own Foundation.  “We salute the city of Boston and its public schools for their commitment to provide all students with the opportunity to start the day with a good breakfast.”

Boston Public Schools plans to continue expanding the program to additional schools in the fall of 2013.



Photos by Robert Castagna.



map-at-condonThis spring, the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP) is educating students about where their favorite snacks are grown. At the Condon Elementary School in South Boston, students and teachers decorated a map of the United States with images of the different fruits and vegetables that have been served through FFVP this year.  The map is helping students visualize where their snacks are coming from across the country. Similarly, students in Ms. Madden’s art class at the Russell Elementary School created 3-D images of their favorite snacks with decoupage and paper mache and mapped out where these fresh fruits and vegetables were grown.

Last week was Teacher Appreciation Week here in Boston and we at BPS Food and Nutrition Services, recognize that distributing these healthy snacks during the school day may take extra time and effort from our educators. BPS’ FFVP would like to recognize teachers like Ms. Madden who have made sure their students are also learning about and trying these new fruits and veggies each week.  Teachers across the city are connecting FFVP snacks with lessons on healthy eating, discussions about seeds in fruits and vegetables, and persuasive writing exercises.

Thank you teachers and school staff for all you do to help make sure our students have increased access to healthy fresh fruits and vegetables each week!