Sponsored By: IDEA Public Schools


You may have heard the concept of “farm to table” dining with concerns to the growing hip trend among the culinary scene. The term refers to practice of growing and using local food to be served.

I feel lucky as a parent to now know that many schools, including IDEA Public Schools where my first-grade son attends, have began to adopt this concept within their science programs to be used in the very cafeteria they eat at daily.

The vision of IDEA’s Farm Program is to grow through quality food, practical knowledge, and meaningful experiences.

The farm program is part of a larger IDEA Public Schools Initiative called Healthy Kids Here.  The mission of Healthy Kids Here Farm Program is to make IDEA Public Schools one of the healthiest districts in the nation.

In the last two years alone, the IDEA campus farms grew more than 10,000 pounds of produce to provide healthy and nutritious meals for students attending IDEA’s network of schools in South Texas’s Rio Grande Valley.

IDEA’s program currently has 3 half-acre farms and 6 school gardens {7 as of December 18th} that produce high-quality fruits and vegetables grown on school grounds and delivered straight to the cafeteria to serve our children.

What I absolutely love the most is that they also seek to promote healthy eating and living to our local community through on-campus farmer’s markets. Local farmer’s markets have been a huge part of my family’s life for years. I have always emphasized to my child the importance of supporting our local farmer’s markets for the sake of our community, economy, and overall quality of life.

In addition, the farms and gardens serve as educational resources for the teachers, students, and parents during the school day and after-school programming.

By the 2017-2018 school year, the program will expand to six production school farms while also managing more than ten educational school gardens across the Rio Grande Valley as well as San Antonio and our campuses right here in Austin!

I believe it is important for our children to have knowledge of and gain respect for where their food comes from. A generation of gratitude and passion for these natural resources are important to everyone’s future, especially the ones we are raising.

What benefits do you see in incorporating a farm program in our children’s schools?


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