Government taking school nutrition program across the province

Above: Premier Notley, Education Minister Eggen and Health Minister Hoffman visit Our Lady of Peace School in Edmonton to announce the expanded school nutrition program. – GOA Photo

by Morinville News Staff

A $10 million allocation in the provincial budget will make funds available to take Alberta’s school nutrition program to every school board in the 2017/18 school year.

Fourteen school boards were funded $3.5 million this school year as the school nutrition program was first rolled out to 5000 students in 33 schools, allowing for the provision of a nutritious meal or snack each day.

“We know students can’t focus in class if they have an empty stomach,” Premier Rachel Notley said. Wednesday. “Giving students access to a daily nutritious meal not only ensures they have the fuel they need to get through the school day, it also helps develop the skills that ensure lifelong healthy nutrition. That’s how we are working to make life better for Alberta families.”

David Eggen, Minister of Education, said it has been incredible to witness the unique and innovative approaches school boards have taken to implement the program and the resulting impact it is having in the classroom.

“I’m excited for this next phase as we continue to meet the basic needs of our students, while charting the path towards a nutrition program model that is sustainable for schools,” he said.

The 14 pilot school boards will receive $250,000 each in grant funding for the 2017/18 school year – the remaining 46 school boards, $141,000 each to implement the program.

The school boards must demonstrate how their program adheres to the Alberta Nutrition Guidelines for Children and Youth. They will be required to include a nutrition education component as part of the program.

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