by Jennifer Sierra
Dayton High School students won 1st place in the “Kentucky School Breakfast Challenge“. DHS increased school breakfast participation by 30% when compared to the same period during the 2013-2014 School Year. As first place winner, Dayton High School received $1,500 to use toward enhancing their School Breakfast Program and a visit from MVP, Artose Pinner– Former NFL Player sponsored by the Southeast Dairy Association. Artose Pinner visited the students at Dayton High School during their lunch hour last Friday. During his visit he signed autographs and took pictures with school staff and students.
More students are getting the nutrition they need to learn thanks to the “Kentucky School Breakfast Challenge“. The challenge, sponsored by the Kentucky Department of Education in cooperation with the Southeast United Dairy Industry Association, aimed to increase breakfast participation in schools across Kentucky and for Dayton High School, they were successful. “Students who eat breakfast show improved academic performance, including a general increase in math and reading scores,” stated Melinda Turner from Southeast United Dairy Industry Associates.
Many Kentucky students don’t take advantage of the opportunity to eat breakfast at school and start the school day hungry. Dayton Independent Schools Superintendent Jay Brewer told us that it weighs heavily on him when he has to cancel school due to inclement weather. “I think about those kids that only get to eat when they come to school. I worry about them.”
Brewer and Jan Crone, the Director of School Nutrition in the Dayton Independent Schools, spoke about programs that are being put into place to help end malnutrition in the school system in Dayton, Kentucky. The Freestore Foodbank is opening up a pantry in the school so hungry students can go and get food between classes or pick up something to take home at night to eat. In June, Dayton High School’s cafeteria will be open to all children 18 and under for 2 free meals a day. This federally funded program will allow kids to get 2 hot meals a day from 10:30 AM until 12:00 PM and 1:00 PM until 2:30 PM. Students within the school system get to eat free during the school year already but that only covers them while they are in school. Now, with programs like these, kids can start focusing on their schoolwork and not think about where their next meal will come from and what they need to do to eat when school is not is session.
Dayton High School is enrolled in the Fuel Up to Play 60 Program. Fuel Up to Play 60 is an in-school nutrition and physical activity program launched by National Dairy Council (NDC) and National Football League (NFL), with additional partnership support from U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The program encourages youth to consume nutrient-dense foods (low-fat and fat-free dairy, fruits, vegetables and whole grains) and achieve at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day. Visit FuelUpToPlay60.com or www.southeastdairy.org to learn more.