Greeley-Evans School District 6 Farm to School
Greeley-Evans School District 6 began its Farm to School program in 2007, when the District purchased one crop of cherry tomatoes for $239. Since then, with the assistance of numerous grants, including the USDA's Farm to School Grant, the program has expanded to other fruits, vegetables, dairy, and even meat and poultry items. Today, about 80% of our lunches are prepared from scratch in our Central Production Kitchen (CPK), and around 25% of our food purchases are local, with the rate of local food purchases increasing each year.
D6 Nutrition Services also provides financial, technical, and educational support for school gardens at all levels (elementary, middle, and high) across the district. As of the 2016-17 school year, Nutrition Services supports four gardens running at full capacity, while providing assistance to an additional five schools who wish to start or expand their garden programs.
In addition to providing grant-writing, fundraising, and technical assistance to the gardens, Nutrition Services operates two garden programs to enhance learning and nutrition opportunities: Garden to Cafeteria and BUGS (Bringing Urban Gardens to Schools). Garden to Cafeteria establishes a safe, state-approved protocol for serving garden produce in school cafeterias (both on salad bars and in menu items), thus integrating the garden into the school as a whole and ensuring that even students who are not in the garden class or club can still enjoy its produce. BUGS provides garden trainings and lesson plans matching CO State Standards and aligned to specific subjects and grade levels. Teachers who are new to gardening can request for Nutrition Services staff to teach BUGS lessons, or use the resources to teach the lessons themselves, if they feel comfortable.