The purpose of Florida’s What Works Contest is to encourage and reward outstanding practices in schools that go above and beyond during special recognition weeks. The recognition weeks are set by the School Nutrition Association and the division. The contests in school year 2013-14 included Florida School Breakfast Week, National School Lunch Week, Florida Farm to School Week and National School Breakfast Week. Schools are encouraged to promote the special dates to students and families in an effort to bring awareness to school meals.
Englewood Elementary School, Sarasota County
"Sarasota County School's Food and Nutrition Services Department partnered with local farmers and the Farm to School initiative to help Englewood Elementary School students understand where their food comes from, as well as to promote the elementary school's 2013-2014 school-wide theme, Englewood Elementary: A Good Place to Grow. This event was held on November 18 and featured three local farmers - 2012 Florida Farmer of the Year and Southeast Farmer of the Year, Dale McClellan of M&B Farms, David Fleming from Jones Potato Farm and farmer Glen Peachy. Not only did real farmers speak with the students about where food for school meals comes from, but students also learned about farming through a fun song and ski created to emphasize the importance of local farming. Other special features included an antique tractor and a calf, guest characters like Dan the Cool Apple Man, Olly the Orange and the Got Milk Cow, as well as a gift bag for each student that included seeds, wristbands and other prizes."
Irby Elementary, Alachua County
"Irby Elementary celebrated Farm to School Week with a visit to Ms. Bason's class and three other Kindergarten classes from UF Dietitian Students learning about fruits and vegetables and placing them by color on a picture of the rainbow. They also learned about many benefits fruits and vegetables have for their health and growth. The students will harvest their lettuce and have salads prepared by the school cafeteria staff.
The students also had the opportunity to work earlier that day in the garden with University of Florida Dietitian Students who have been helping them grow a garden which will provide vegetables to the cafeteria for them to taste. Most students never have the opportunity to grow their own garden so bringing this to the school is a great learning experience. Our district has 5 schools that currently partner with UF Students and grow their own gardens at school."
Waldo Community School, Alachua County
"Waldo Community School Hosted an event for Florida Farm to School Week on November 18th. Our district partners with the University of Florida Dietitian Students to grow gardens at 5 of the schools in our district. On this day the UF Students came out and did a lesson with the students on vegetables and how the vitamins in vegetables help with their health and growth. They then went outside planted new seeds and harvested Romaine Lettuce that they had been growing and later our cafe manager made wonderful salads for them to taste. Attached are pictures of the event and a video from the news."