Sponsors are invited to register for the Pandemic-EBT webinar that will be hosted from 2-3 p.m. on Thursday, June 11. The webinar will include information about what P-EBT is, how benefits will be issued and what role schools and districts have in this process. Submit questions using this online form to ensure your questions are addressed. If you do not receive a confirmation email after registering, please work with your IT department to add email@example.com to your safe sender’s list.
Every school year, over 25,000 children in Colorado miss at least one day of school due to preventable toothaches. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is conducting a quick survey to determine needs and interest in assisting youth and families with preventive oral health resources while access to care is limited. School Food Authorities and sponsors can fill out the survey that should take less than five minutes to complete. Thank you in advance for taking the time to respond. Access the survey here.
USDA Farmers to Families Food Boxes
As part of the Coronavirus Farm Assistance Program, the U.S. Department of Agriculture created the Farmers to Families Food Box Program. These family-sized boxes contain fresh produce, dairy and meat products. USDA urges SFAs to receive, store and distribute the boxes if possible. The awarded contractors are searching for partners that have cold storage available and the ability to distribute a large number of boxes to families in need.
The School Nutrition Unit hosted a Summer Food Service Program training webinar on June 2. The webinar recording and a PDF of the presentation slides are available on the SFSP Online Trainings webpage. This training fulfills the 2020 SFSP sponsor training requirement.
The School Nutrition Unit is working on back-to-school guidance to help sponsors plan for meal service in the fall. A request was submitted to USDA to extend all waivers and guidance on various back-to-school learning models that include different meal service options was also requested. As USDA guidance is released, the School Nutrition Unit is also working to develop a plan for the next school year including identifying what additional flexibilities may be needed to operate. In the meantime, some suggestions for SFAs to start preparing for the start of the school year include:
Getting involved in conversations with superintendents and principals on the type(s) of learning models they are planning for in the fall.
Checking in with your local health department on recommendations for meal service. The types of appropriate meal services available to schools and districts, (e.g. all meals in the classroom, staggered meal times and lunch in the cafeteria, etc.) is a local level decision.
Considering all serving models for your district when purchasing food items and equipment (e.g. will you need more pre-packaged fruits and vegetables rather than No. 10 cans). Keep in mind that regular procurement requirements apply for the school year.
The School Nutrition team at CDE understands that the many unknowns make planning difficult for the next school year. Please know that our office continues to work extremely hard and is a strong advocate for sponsors across the state. Our main mission is to ensure children are fed and that districts have what they need to ensure seamless operations during these very difficult times.