Our Story
We build the capacity of edible education programs with tools, resources and trainings rooted in 25 years of experience.

It all started in 1995 with the idea that we can transform children's relationship with food if we give them a taste of what's possible. To demonstrate this simple truth, Alice Waters created the first Edible Schoolyard in partnership with the principal at a public middle school in Berkeley. 

As the idea took shape, a committed and creative coalition of educators, families, farmers, cooks, and artists joined the effort. Involving students directly was key: with their participation, an organic garden took root and flourished as a rich learning environment, while a kitchen classroom brought everyone to the table to share. 

Alice Waters's idea is known as edible education. Edible education is flourishing across the country and globe, evidenced by the nearly 6,000 member programs in our network.  Our program in Berkeley supports the movement by providing resources and offering trainings to educators from all over the world.

Today, Alice is advocating for school meal programs that provide free, regeneratively-farmed meals for every child, K - 12. This model, called school supported agriculture, supports the health and wellness of children, farmers, farmworkers, and school food service workers while addressing climate change through carbon sequestering farming practices. At the heart of this work is the conviction that nutrition begins in the soil.


1. Our Mission 

The Edible Schoolyard Project is dedicated to transforming the health of children by designing hands-on educational experiences in the garden, kitchen, and cafeteria that connect children to food, nature, and to each other.

An Edible Education places the child at the center of their learning and uses food to engage all aspects of the child’s education. Through growing, processing, cooking, eating, studying, talking, and thinking about food, students develop skills, knowledge, and behaviors that enrich their academic and nonacademic lives, bolster their growth as individuals and in relationships, and cultivate meaningful engagement with their own health, the health of their communities, and the health of the planet. 

At the heart of an Edible Education is a just and joyful learning experience for every child.


2. Our Work 

OUR GARDEN AND KITCHEN CLASSROOMS

The garden, kitchen, and cafeteria at King Middle School serve as a demonstration site and innovation hub for edible education curriculum and pedagogy. We have worked closely with the whole school community to connect our one-acre teaching garden and kitchen classroom to the science and humanities curricula taught to all students. Across the playground, a larger cafeteria kitchen prepares delicious school meals from scratch for all public school students in Berkeley, using fresh, local, seasonal ingredients.

In our professional development programs and short courses, we empower educators to create and sustain similar programs in their home communities. Our goal is to help schools and communities develop strong edible education programs grounded in shared standards of practice and justice, responsive to the cultural, institutional, and funding realities of their own particular situation. 

SCHOOL SUPPORTED AGRICULTURE

The goal of school supported agriculture is to provide a free, sustainable school lunch for all students, procured directly from farmers and ranchers who take care of the land and their workers. In this vision, the cafeteria transforms from an after-thought to the heart of the school, a place to build community and for students to learn the values of land stewardship and nourishment.

We are implementing this vision in partnership with school districts in California. Our intention is that this work serves as a framework for other school districts looking to develop a similar experience for their community.

THE ALICE WATERS INSTITUTE AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CALIFORNIA, DAVIS

The Alice Waters Institute will be a hub for edible education located in Aggie Square—a thriving innovation ecosystem UC Davis is building in Sacramento. The Alice Waters Institute will advance edible education and school lunch through research, trainings, collaborations, and partnerships. 

Read the press release announcing this exciting initiative.


3. Our People 

OUR FOUNDER: ALICE WATERS

Alice Waters is a chef, author, food activist, and the founder and owner of Chez Panisse Restaurant in Berkeley, California.

She founded the Edible Schoolyard Project in 1995 — combining her perspectives as a trained Montessori teacher, fervent political activist, gifted chef, and champion of sustainable agriculture. 

Her vision is grounded in the following key principle: children deserve to be nurtured in body and mind, treated with dignity, and shown that they are valued.

THE EDIBLE SCHOOLYARD PROJECT STAFF 
DAVID CHAI 
Executive Director
ESTHER COOK 
Operations Manager, Kitchen Team
GRISELDA COONEY 
Senior Teacher &
Family Engagement Manager
ELLE FORD
Teaching and Research Fellow
JACQUELINE GARRETT 
Operations Coordinator
EMILIE KRAMER 
Director of Operations
NICK LEE 
Senior Program Manager 
ANGELA MCKEE-BROWN 
Deputy Executive Director
SAMA MIRGHAVAMEDDIN
Garden Specialist
AARON OJALVO LEVY
Development Officer
GEOFF PALLA 
Operations Manager, Garden Team
SHILPA RAM
Program Director
TAÍS REIS
Chef Teacher
OLINA SCOTT
Family Nights Out Assistant
RUSSELL STERTEN 
Community Manager
CLAIRE SULLIVAN
Partnerships and Events Manager
JASON URIBE 
Senior Garden Teacher
RAQUEL VIGIL
Curriculum Specialist
THE EDIBLE SCHOOLYARD PROJECT BOARD
JAMES ALEFANTIS 
JASON BADE 
 
GRETA CARUSO
JONATHAN MOSCONE 
 
JULIE SIMPSON 
ALICE WATERS
THE EDIBLE SCHOOLYARD PROJECT AMBASSADORS 
MARK BUELL
JAKE GYLLENHAAL
RAJ PATEL
MICHAEL POLLAN
THE EDIBLE SCHOOLYARD PROJECT ADVISORY BOARD 
MICHAEL ABLEMAN
JOSÉ ANDRÉS
MIKHAIL BARYSHNIKOV
WENDELL BERRY
KELLY BROWNELL
PETER BUCKLEY
SUSIE TOMPKINS BUELL
NANCY RUTTER CLARK
TOM COLICCHIO
BILLY COLLINS
ELEANOR COPPOLA
TROY DUSTER
DELAINE EASTON
ADAM GOPNIK
SHELBY GANS
ANGELO GARRO
CAROLE SHORENSTEIN HAYS
SHERRY HIROTA
WES JACKSON
BOB KERREY
CHRISTINA KIM
JONATHAN KOZOL
FRANCES MOORE LAPPÉ
PHILLIP LOPATE
DAVID MAS MASUMOTO
FRANCES McDORMAND
BETTE MIDLER
DAPHNE MILLER
DAVIA NELSON
MARION NESTLE
NELL NEWMAN
JAMIE OLIVER
KYLE REDFORD
ROBERT REDFORD
RUTH REICHL
BOZ SCAGGS
ORVILLE SCHELL
ERIC SCHLOSSER
PETER SELLARS 
ANNA DEAVERE SMITH
MERYL STREEP
MICHAEL TILSON THOMAS
CALVIN TRILLIN
ALICE WALKER
JACQUI WEST

 

 


4. Annual Reports & Financials

Our annual reports provide details of our program work and a full list of our supporters. Download our most recent annual reports in PDF format below, or contact us to request a hard copy. 

ANNUAL REPORTS 
  • 2017-2018 (PDF)
  • 2016-2017 (PDF
  • 2014-2016 (PDF
  • 2013-2014 (PDF
  • 2012-2013 (PDF
  • 2010-2012 (PDF
FINANCIAL STATEMENTS & 990 TAX FILINGS 
  • 2018-2019 Financial Statements (PDF) and 990 Tax Filing (PDF)
  • 2017-2018 Financial Statements (PDF) and 990 Tax Filing (PDF)
  • 2016-2017 Financial Statements (PDF) and 990 Tax Filing (PDF)
  • 2015-2016 Financial Statements (PDF) and 990 Tax Filing (PDF)
  • 2014-2015 Financial Statements (PDF) and 990 Tax Filing (PDF)
  • 2013-2014 Financial Statements (PDF) and 990 Tax Filing (PDF)
  • 2012-2013 Financial Statements (PDF) and 990 Tax Filing (PDF)
  • 2011-2012 Financial Statements (PDF) and 990 Tax Filing (PDF)
  • 2010-2011 Financial Statements (PDF) and 990 Tax Filing (PDF)