To celebrate the publication of Proceedings of the Learning Connection Summit: Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Student Achievement, I’m offering a short daily post during February on the ABCs of the health and academics.
M is for MICHIGAN
I’ve had the pleasure of participating in several Michigan healthy school events over the years and I am honored to be invited back in March (23-27) to present a series of four “First Fuel” School Breakfast Challenge trainings across the state. The Michigan goal is to have 60 percent or more of free/reduced lunch participants also eating a school breakfast by 2015. The recently released Food Research and Action Center’s (FRAC) 2014 School Breakfast Scorecard found reported that Michigan’s rate of school breakfast participation is 53 percent of lunch participation – an increase of 2 percent since 2010.
While the Michigan school breakfast goal is ambitious, they have strong support and the right partners for the job. At the Michigan Department of Education, support comes from the very top, since Superintendent Mike Flanagan is a strong and vocal advocate for school breakfast as the foundation for academic success. I know several other states that wish they had such a knowledgable and supportive state superintendent! Other active partners in the “First Fuel” School Breakfast Challenge include the Michigan Team Nutrition Program, which has a extensive reach on Twitter and Facebook, as well as Michigan Blue Cross Blue Shield and United Dairy Industries of Michigan who are offering $250,000 in grants for marketing and equipment. I am looking forward to being part of the Michigan work to insure that all children are well-nourished and ready to learn.