DETROIT (AP) — A partnership between Detroit Public Schools and a nonprofit group aims to educate students about healthy eating and includes planting new gardens at schools.
The Greening of Detroit has joined the Detroit Public Schools’ Offices of School Nutrition and Science Education for the effort at dozens of schools. The Greening is offering technical support, nutrition education and urban agriculture expertise.
“Our expanding garden program, where students make connections through our science curriculum and their lives through their school gardens, provides an important bridge between learning and health for our students, while also bringing fresh garden foods right to their cafeteria tables,” Betti Wiggins, executive director in the district’s Office of School Nutrition, said in a statement.
As part of the effort, some students will see vegetables from the school gardens in the lunchroom, organizers said.
Garden attendants have been hired by the district and trained by The Greening’s urban agriculture staff to manage existing school gardens. Nutrition education classroom lessons and related activities are planned for the upcoming school year.
“This partnership gives us an additional opportunity to help change young people’s relationship with food, nurturing healthier habits and self-sufficiency,” said Lionel Bradford, The Greening’s vice president of operations and interim director of Urban Agriculture.
The project is part of the Detroit School Garden Collaborative, which is supported by federal funding.
Also this summer, 18 district students were named to The Greening’s Youth Farm Crew. They’re learning about farming, agriculture and nutrition, and getting job and career counseling and leadership training. They’re also helping to tend gardens at schools.