Partners for Breakfast in the Classroom Shifts Focus to State-Level Action, Bringing School Breakfast to High-Need Districts


The 2014-15 school year has brought about exciting changes for us here at the School Nutrition Foundation, along with our Partners for Breakfast in the ClassroomFRACNAESP Foundation, and NEA HIN. With the generous support of the Walmart Foundation, the newest phase of Partners for Breakfast in the Classroom shifts our focus from direct implementation in individual schools to a state-level expansion; this expansion will allow us to work in partnership with local organizations to provide district- and school-level technical assistance and support for start-up breakfast-in-the-classroom programs. In addition to our existing partners, Partners for  Breakfast in the Classroom will be bringing in allies from local anti-hunger, education, nutrition, and health communities in each eligible state, where we then host “Breakfast Summits.” The summits are designed to help generate interest and build strong, systemic support for BIC programs, and lay the groundwork for a smooth assessment and grant application process.

Currently three states are eligible to participate: Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Arizona; additional states will be announced in coming months. We held our Virginia summit in June, and our Pennsylvania summit shortly thereafter, and we have great news for school districts in both states—the deadline for RFPs and applications has been extended! If you live in Virginia or Pennsylvania, and you are interested in implementing breakfast-in-the-classroom at your school, here is your amended timeline:

  • Wednesday, October 15, 2014: Letters of intention/commitment from child nutrition directors are due, including the targeted number of schools and the projected number of students to be served; letters of support from your school district superintendent, and any other stakeholder group including, but not limited to, school district business managers and school nutrition directors are also due on this date.
  • Saturday, November 1, 2014: Applicants will receive a phone call from food service consultant Liz Campbell, RD, by Saturday, November 1. At this time you may discuss any aspect of the assessment forms in advance of the application due date.
  • Saturday, November 15, 2014: Applications are due; don’t forget to avail yourself of the support available through SF consultant Liz Campbell, who can guide you through the application process after assessments are complete.

If you live in Arizona, mark your calendar for Saturday, November 15 to attend our statewide breakfast-in-the-classroom summit.

Our strategy moving forward is simple, and fundamentally unchanged from the original mission of Partners for Breakfast in the Classroom:

  1. A successful, sustainable breakfast-in-the-classroom program requires input—and buy-in—from key stakeholders;
  2. Providing the technical assistance districts need to complete a thorough assessment, and complete the application process;
  3. Continued support for districts throughout the implementation process.

As we apply these principles at a state-wide level, Partners for Breakfast in the Classroom further leverages the benefits of stakeholder engagement by bringing in local state allies to increase community support for BIC. Our ultimate goal is to increase access to, and participation in, breakfast-in-the-classroom. Does your school qualify? Review the following:

Requirements and Qualifications

  • At least 80 percent of students qualify for free- or reduced-priced meals (near eligible schools will be considered)
  • Less than 50 percent School Breakfast Average Daily Participation
  • Students must be allowed to eat breakfast in the classroom
  • Breakfast must be served at no charge to all students in the funded schools
  • Strong support from School District Superintendent  (or designee) who will be required to sign a Memorandum of Understanding
  • Commitment to making reasonable efforts to continue the program for at least 3 school years
  • Willingness to promote the program on school/school district website(s)

A successful Breakfast in the Classroom program will meet the following criteria under the grant guidelines:

  • Cost effective, with a focus on maximizing participation increases/number of schools implementing universal in-classroom breakfast per funding allocated
  • Easy to operate for school nutrition staff, teachers, and other education support staff
  • Popular with students, parents, and the greater school community
  • Sustainable, accomplished through developing a financially solvent program which also has widespread support from various stakeholders in the school community including students, parents, teachers, educational support professionals, and administrators
  • Consistent with current dietary guidelines and USDA’s meal pattern requirements for school breakfast

This is a tremendous opportunity for schools who wish to implement breakfast-in-the-classroom but need additional funding and support to move forward. If you are awarded a Partners for Breakfast in the Classroom grant, you will have access to individuals and organizations experienced in successful BIC implementation, as well as technical support to guide you through the assessment and application process. To learn more about how you can apply for a Partner for Breakfast in the Classroom grant, contact Sarah Murphy at, via fax to 301.686.3115, or via mail to:

Attn: Sarah Murphy
School Nutrition Foundation
120 Waterfront St. Ste. 300
National Harbor, MD 20745

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One Response to Partners for Breakfast in the Classroom Shifts Focus to State-Level Action, Bringing School Breakfast to High-Need Districts

  1. Pingback: December 2014 In the News: Student Engagement, Farm-to-School Grants, and Breakfast-in-the-Classroom in 2015

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