Educational goals to be met by each pilot school selected:
- Host a kick-off assembly where guest agriculture speaker(s) will motivate the school for the week and explain the purpose of the event.
- Hold at least one Georgia commodity “taste testing,” with the commodity served in its raw form during the week.
- Host a school-wide art contest where each classroom (joint class effort) presents any form of artwork centered on any single Georgia food commodity; the winning class will be taken on a local farm field trip.
- Distribute and discuss a piece of literature highlighting agriculture (age appropriate for the class, provided to the school by the Georgia Department of Agriculture).
- Provide clear identification of what foods are being served and nutritional information for all food served during the week.
- At the conclusion of the event, all children will participate in answering the question “What I learned about Georgia agriculture this week…” in an essay/short story/etc. contest.
- Each school is encouraged to set up three additional goals for completion (i.e., start/expand a school garden; continue the program for another week, host additional school-related events that tie in Georgia agriculture, etc.).
Tools provided to each pilot school:
- The Georgia Department of Agriculture is committed to helping each school provide at least 75-100 percent Georgia Grown food on every cafeteria plate during the week of the event.
- The GDA will provide trainings in food safety and food preparation, and offer tips and assistance in recipe development, where needed.
- Age-appropriate children’s literature required during the week of the program, and educational handouts to be sent home to parents informing them of the week’s events (including cafeteria menus, nutritional information for foods served, and recipes for similar items).
- Every local nutritional director will be given a seasonal chart for buying produce in the future, to help increase awareness of what Georgia produce is available when during the calendar year.
- The GDA will work to garner media attention relating to the event for each school in a joint effort to get the word out about the program.
**An Online Tool-Kit is currently in the process of being designed. This will serve as an all-inclusive resource for anyone involved in farm to school initiatives, including, but not be limited to, the following:
- Printable Georgia-based agriculture curriculum for all grade and subject levels, plus interactive web tools around the curriculum provided.
- Information for Nutrition Directors including how to procure local foods, food safety concerns, locating area farmers who sale to schools, as well as distributors who work with local farmers.
- Information for farmers including how to sell directly to a school and/or school system, how to work with current school food distributors, forming co-ops, food safety concerns, packaging and how school systems procure food.
- Interactive tools and information for students.
- Tied to the Georgia Grown website, resources to locate specific foods, growers and distributors, who are involved in farm to school with info including volume, packaging, price and areas reached could be available. Agritourism and farm field trips will also be a search option through this tool.