ChicopeeFRESH is thrilled to announce that we have been selected to participate in the 2016-2017 Northeast Farm to School Institute! The Institute is a "unique year-long professional learning opportunity that helps school teams take their Farm to School work to the next level." As part of the Institute, our team (pictured below) journeyed to the gorgeous Shelburne Farms in VT to take part in a three day retreat where we networked with other FTS teams, participated in workshops, and put our heads together with a coach to develop a mission and action plan. We had an absolute blast at the retreat! Not only did we enjoy delicious farm fresh meals, but we took inspiration from the beautiful setting and the incredible teams around us to set goals for our FTS program.
Meet the team:
- Increase local purchasing by 2-5%
- Increase professional development opportunities for food service staff and enhance the image of cooks within the school community
- Increase opportunities for teachers to integrate FTS into the curriculum (through PD for teachers; lessons & resources; and connections between school gardens and math & ELA curriculum)
- Explore establishing 2-3 food systems-related culminating projects each year as district practice
- Increase awareness and visibility of our efforts (create community buy-in) through marketing, events, etc.
- Identify important stakeholder networks and develop clear "asks" for each
If we accomplish these goals, we will be closer to realizing our overarching vision for ChicopeeFRESH, to provide every student in the district with access to locally sourced, nutritious school meals, as wells as experiential learning opportunities in the classroom and garden.