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NEWS RELEASES 2007-08

NEWS RELEASES 2007-08 :: AUGUST 30, 2007

USDA AWARDS $1 MILLION TO THE NC DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION; GRANT TO PROMOTE FRESH FRUIT AND VEGETABLE CONSUMPTION IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS

Thanks to a $1 million grant from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), students in select public schools will be able to participate in the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program this school year. The primary purpose of this program is to increase students’ consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables.

This is the fourth consecutive year North Carolina has been awarded the opportunity to participate in the USDA Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program. Funds will be distributed among 25 elementary schools to purchase and serve a wide variety of free fresh fruits and vegetables to all students in participating schools. Schools are providing fruit baskets inside the classroom, kiosks in the hallways, and other innovative approaches to give students the opportunity to grab a fresh fruit or vegetable snack throughout the school day. Participation in this program also promotes a healthier school environment.

State Superintendent June Atkinson was pleased the state had once again been selected to participate in this important program. "Our students need to learn healthy eating habits at a young age. This program will help with these efforts and ensure that our students build habits that will benefit them for a lifetime," Atkinson said.

Schools participating in the program also will make nutrition education a priority so students will learn the importance of fresh fruits and vegetables in a healthy diet. This program creates an optimum environment for students to develop healthful snack habits because it uses all of their senses – sound, sight, touch, smell, and most important, taste.

The NCDPI's Child Nutrition Services Section is partnering with the NC Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services, and the NC Department of Health and Human Services' Division of Public Health, to implement the program in the following elementary schools for the 2007-08 school year:

  • Bearfield Primary School, Hertford County Schools;
  • Mattamuskeet Elementary School, Hyde County Schools;
  • Supply Elementary School, Brunswick County Schools;
  • Graham A. Barden Elementary School, Craven County Schools;
  • Oaks Road Elementary School, Craven County Schools;
  • Edwin A. Alderman Elementary School, New Hanover County Schools;
  • Johnson Primary School, Camp Lejeune Dependents Schools;
  • Tarawa Terrace II Elementary School, Camp Lejeune Dependents Schools;
  • Rich Square-Creecy Elementary School, Northampton County Schools;
  • Edgewood Elementary School, Whiteville City Schools;
  • Boone Trail Elementary School, Harnett County Schools;
  • Candor Elementary School, Montgomery County Schools;
  • Long Branch Elementary School, Public Schools of Robeson County;
  • Cyrus P. Frazier Elementary School, Guilford County Schools;
  • Southmont Elementary School, Randolph County Schools;
  • Elizabeth Hanford-Dole Elementary School, Rowan-Salisbury Schools;
  • North Rowan Elementary School, Rowan-Salisbury Schools;
  • Aquadale Elementary School, Stanly County Schools;
  • Walter Bickett Elementary School, Union County Schools;
  • Sparta Elementary School, Alleghany County Schools;
  • Mountain View Elementary School, Ashe County Schools;
  • Newland Elementary School, Avery County Schools;
  • Hall Fletcher Elementary School, Asheville City Schools;
  • Smokey Mountain Elementary School, Jackson County Schools; and
  • Sunshine Elementary School, Rutherford County Schools.

For more information on the USDA Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program, please contact the NCDPI Communications division at 919.807.3450.

About the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction:
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction provides leadership to 115 local public school districts and 126 charter schools serving over 1.5 million students in kindergarten through high school graduation. The agency is responsible for all aspects of the state's public school system and works under the direction of the North Carolina State Board of Education.


For more information:
NCDPI Communication and Information Division, 919.807.3450.