Considering the large portion of the student body that's involved in extra curricular activities, we noticed the untapped opportunity to start an After School Snack Program in Garfield Heights.
Think about it - if you're in the first lunch period (which starts at 10:09am if you're at the high school), and you have to stay for 2 hours after school for basketball practice or a drama club meeting or group study or some other enrichment activity, you might not be getting home until 5pm - that's nearly 7 hours without something to eat! Mind you, some of the students might stop to fill up on a bag of cheetos, or a Little Debbie Snack Cake, but wouldn't we rather they eat a nutritious snack to hold them over until supper time?
When we first decided to offer an After School Snack to the middle and high school students, we figured we would simply offer a bagged combo of 2 meal components to meet the meal pattern requirements, which if you're not familiar, are a little different than breakfast & lunch...
Snacks must include 2 full servings of 2 of the following 4 food components:
1 cup fluid milk
1 oz. eq. whole grain
1 oz. eq. meat/meat alternate
3/4 cup fruit or vegetable
However, we know that students are more likely to eat when they have a CHOICE in what they're eating. We decided to utilize our Breakfast in the Classroom carts to create a snack service that facilitates choice. On any given day, students have the option to choose from 4 food items, color coded by food group to help make the cafeteria (or in this case, a hallway near the locker rooms) an extension of the classroom!