Breakfast is the most important meal of the day for all of us, but for growing children it’s a critical part of physical and educational growth—hungry kids can’t learn! That’s why we’re so passionate about breakfast-in-the-classroom—it’s proven to increase participation in the School Breakfast Program (SBP). The Partners for Breakfast in the Classroom are excited to announce that we are now funding Breakfast in the Classroom grants in Texas, and the application period is open!
Texas Roadmap: Dallas ISD—and Beyond
Did you know that Partners for Breakfast in the Classroom got its start—at least in part—in Texas? Dallas ISD was one of the very first districts to receive a Partners for BIC grant back in 2010-11, and by 2013 Dallas had expanded breakfast-in-the-classroom district-wide. (Ed. note: Don’t miss our 2011 interview with Dora Rivas, then director of Dallas ISD nutrition services for more on BIC’s early days in Dallas.)
Dallas has continued its commitment to student well-being (not to mention fighting hunger) through many methods, including serving students breakfast and lunch during the most recent holiday break.
We are thrilled to be back in Texas, offering schools and districts across the state the opportunity to bring breakfast-in-the-classroom to their students.
School Breakfast Works
Eating breakfast at school improves academic performance, health, and behavior; better performance on standardized tests, improved concentration and memory, better math scores, better attendance and fewer tardies, and fewer behavioral referrals to the front office. However, did you know that fewer than half of students who are eligible for a free or reduced price lunch also participate in the SBP? In 2014, more than 1 in 5 U.S. children lived in food insecure households, a number which underscores the importance of expanding participation in school breakfast.
Why Breakfast in the Classroom?
When you move breakfast from the cafeteria to the classroom, and you make it “universal” or free for all students, you remove two of the common barriers to participation. Lack of time to eat breakfast, lack of awareness of the availability of breakfast at school, late bus schedules or parent drop-offs, and stigma are some of the main reasons participation in SBP lags behind that of the NSLP. Serving breakfast after the bell rings, in the classroom, free for all students is a proven way to dramatically increase those participation numbers.
About the Grant
The Partners for Breakfast in the Classroom grant is now available to schools in Texas, as well as nine other states: Idaho, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Ohio, and Utah. Targeted to help school districts and schools in high need cover the up-front costs associated with implementing a BIC program, grant funds can be used to purchase equipment and supplies, provide limited staff support and training, or procure marketing materials and other related expenses.
Eligible schools must meet the following criteria:
- Either 70 percent or more students qualify for free or reduced prices meals, or the school operates community eligibility (CEP) or Provision 2;
- Average daily participation (ADP) in school breakfast is at 50 percent or less;
- Able to serve breakfast in the classroom at no charge to all students after the morning bell;
- Strong stakeholder support from school leadership and staff;
- Three-year commitment to making reasonable efforts to continue the program, and
- Willingness to promote the program through social media and school district communication channels.
Ongoing technical assistance is another feature that makes the Partners for BIC grant stand out. Don’t miss our TA Video to learn more about the grant application process.
The Partners for Breakfast in the Classroom are a consortium of national education and nutrition organizations, including the Food & Research Action Center (FRAC), the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP) Foundation, the NEA Foundation, and the School Nutrition Foundation (SNF). The Partners for BIC received a $7.5 million grant from the Walmart Foundation to implement BIC in high-need districts in ten additional states, to reach 30,000 additional students.
We hope you’ll take a moment and get to know our local partners:
- Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association (TEPSA)
- Texas Association of School Nutrition (TASN)
- Texas State Teachers Association (TSTA)
Additional Breakfast-in-the-Classroom Resources for Texas Schools and Districts