Archive for litchfield elementary school district

why don’t more schools do this?

Posted in child hunger & nutrition, food, metro phoenix with tags , , , on October 23, 2009 by foodbankguy

I was really excited when friend and AAFB board member David Schwake sent me this article on his unique way of keeping kids fed at his elementary school.  David is the Food Service Director for the Litchfield Elementary School District in Litchfield Park, a suburb west of Phoenix.  The district serves a large portion of households at or near poverty (defined in 2009 as a family of four living on $22,050… ouch) and David has seen the negative impacts of hunger at his school:  attendance problems, discipline issues, trouble concentrating, apathy toward learning, and so on.   Something needed to be done, and a few years ago, David jumped into action.

I’ll let the article speak for itself–go ahead, read it now!–but damn if this isn’t an inexpensive, worthy idea that is generating positive results.  I’ve also been fortunate to be David’s guest at the school, allowing me a first-hand view of all the activity, how the program works, and how the kids really respond to it… and respond they do!  It’s downright encouraging to see a bunch of 5th graders so eager to work together on a school activity.  You can’t help but realize they’re learning skills that will take them far in life, hands-on stuff, skills that a textbook–or I guess PC nowadays–just can’t convey in this way.

Amazingly, David tells me he’s done countless presentations, tours, demonstrations, you name it, to other principals, superintendents and school administrators, and while everyone seems impressed, very few have taken the next step to actually implement their own program, even though David has offered to help every step of the way.  Why isn’t every school in Arizona doing this?  There’s not even the excuse of there being no money in the budget.  If you’re wondering the same thing and interested in possibly doing something like this at the school you work at, or the school your children attend, feel free to drop me a line.