To address the needs of student heath and wellness within the Dexter community and connect students to local food and agriculture, The Dexter Farm to School Program was established in 2013. The mission of DFtS is to cultivate improvements in personal and community wellness through making meaningful connections between students, food and local agriculture. To fulfill this mission statement, the DFtS program includes farm visits, farmer in the classroom presentations, classroom instruction, garden instruction, and cafeteria servings.
Currently, Dexter Community Schools is comprised of six schools, grades K-12, with a diverse socioeconomic population of approximately 3500 students. DFtS oversees kitchen classroom and garden instruction with a focus on critical pedagogy.
Each school garden has a unique history and purpose, but all have enormous potential for enriching learning. Two of the three edible gardens are production gardens that supply produce to the kitchen labs and cafeterias. The DFtS Program in partnership with the Dexter Food and Nutrition also offers bi-monthly “Harvest of the Month” days where local produce is served in school cafeterias.