Students in kindergarten through 12th grade can now start their day off with a healthy, free breakfast at all of the Malden Public Schools. With support from Project Bread and the New England Dairy and Food Council, the Malden Food Service Department, managed by Whitsons School Nutrition, has launched new breakfast service models and introduced new menu items.
With tasty and healthy choices ranging from hot sausage and egg breakfast sandwiches to tropical smoothies, every Malden Public School student can now start their day full and ready to learn. No application or registration is required for students to participate in the free breakfast program. Previously, school breakfast was served at free, reduced, or full-priced rates, dependent on family income. When students eat healthy, high-quality breakfasts each morning their academic performance increases and behavior improves, leading to better learning environments.
Offering free breakfast to everyone leads to higher-quality meals and more time for students to eat. A streamlined meal service means students can get their breakfasts faster and spend more time eating rather than waiting in cafeteria lines. There is also a decrease in administrative work, so employees can spend more time on meal preparation and service, resulting in healthier and tastier meals. Across Malden, a variety of breakfast models are being used: many students grab breakfast from a station on their way to class, some students take their food from a cart that is brought into their classroom, and other students eat in their cafeterias before school starts.
Providing children with a healthy start to the day has benefits that extend far beyond the classroom. Children who eat school breakfast are more likely to arrive on time to school, retain what they learn, behave better, and experience better health outcomes. The National School Breakfast Program (NSBP) is a federally-funded nutrition program that provides nutritious breakfast to eligible students at low or no cost during the school year. In Massachusetts, the NSBP is administered by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (ESE). Through a legislative appropriation, ESE funds Project Bread to administer the Child Nutrition Outreach Program (CNOP) through an annual grant. CNOP provides technical assistance and innovative solutions to support schools to implement and expand breakfast programs. For more information about school breakfast, visit www.meals4kids.org.
Whitsons School Nutrition provides a wide range of highly customized dining services to public schools, with a strong focus on nutritious, high-quality meals made from wholesome, fresh ingredients. Whitsons has a long and proud history of excellence and growth since 1979 and is setting new standards for the foodservice industry with wholesome foods and family values. For more information, please visit www.whitsons.com or find them on Facebook or Twitter.