Calling all Georgia [farm to table] schools! The USDA wants to visit with their Farm to School Tactical Team in support of local food systems.

Wow – I love getting Georgia Organics’ special monthly update on their push for Farm to School programs and seeing how quickly school gardens and support of local farmers are taking root in metro Atlanta and Decatur. Cobb County schools kicked off their exploration of local food possibilities with a Farm to School Stakeholders meeting this month while City of Decatur schools are launching into their Farm to School workshop program in conjunction with Oakhurst Community Garden. This program is designed especially for teachers and ways to incorporate gardening and local food into lesson plans.

More updates to come on both of these topics, but for now, I wanted to get the word out about the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s national push for farm to table programs in schools. The USDA is accepting applications from schools across the country who already have sustainable food programs underway in their local communities. The goal is to study the start-up, struggles, and success stories of current programs in order to develop a model for others to follow. The long-term goal is to then help school districts implement their own farm to school programs with assistance reaching out to local farms, communicating with stakeholders, and identifying and overcoming obstacles.

School districts have until January 31st, 2010 to apply! Just click here for more information and an application!

Please let me know if you’re involved in a local Atlanta or Decatur Farm to School program – I’d love to learn more firsthand!

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