Seven elementary schools in Mon Valley awarded fresh food grants

Funding will provide students with healthier food choices, impact students’ current and future health

HARRISBURG, Sept. 21 – Today, state Rep. Austin Davis, D-Allegheny, announced that several elementary schools in the Mon Valley were awarded grants to provide students with fresh fruits and vegetables.

Davis said the funding was dispersed through the Department of Education and awarded through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program. The program’s goals are to create healthier school environments by providing healthier food choices, expand the variety of fruits and vegetables students experience, increase fruit and vegetable consumption and positively impact students’ present and future health.

“A hard work ethic isn’t the only thing that enables students to excel in the classroom,” Davis said. “Students need options to nutritious food that in part plays a role in their success. The grants awarded today will do just that and set the standard for a healthy diet.”

The following elementary schools in the 35th Legislative District were awarded funding through the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program:

  • Clairton Elementary School.
  • Clara Barton Elementary School.
  • Duquesne Elementary School.
  • Francis McClure Elementary School.
  • Propel Charter School of McKeesport.
  • South Allegheny Elementary School.
  • Young Scholars of McKeesport Charter School.

Davis said the program works by giving select elementary schools $50 to $75 per student for each school year. The exact amount of per-student funding is determined by the Department of Education and is based on the total funds allocated to the state and the student enrollment at participating schools.

Davis said funding priority is given to schools with the highest rates of students eligible for free- and reduced-price meals. Grantees are required to spend a majority of their grant on the purchase of fresh fruits and vegetables and must develop a plan to establish partnerships to reduce other costs.