1.3.2 Systemic Partnerships
Anne Arundel County Public Schools participates in the Farm to School Program. Fruits and vegetables from local Maryland farms are used in the school cafeteria. Farm to school enriches the connection to students, staff, and school communities with fresh, healthy, and local foods. Farm to School includes procurement and promotion of local foods, educational activities related to agriculture and nutrition and may also enhance hands on learning in the classroom using school gardens. Anne Arundel County began using local foods in the mid 2000's and the program continues to thrive. On the first Friday of the month cafeteria staff promote a seasonal fruit or vegetable. All students who purchase lunch are able to enjoy as much local fruit and vegetables as they would like. Students are always encouraged to "taste the rainbow."
Local Anne Arundel County School Produce Purchases 2016-17
Benefits of the Farm to School Program
Eighth grade students have taken the Farm to School initiative to the next level! In 2018 students planted vegetables and herbs in planters that they built and filled with stone, dirt, and topsoil. The garden became part of one of the outdoor courtyards that were repurposed as outdoor learning spaces. Different lettuces, carrots, and cucumbers were planted as well as herbs. Students then reaped the rewards of their crop with a "salad day" once a week.