Virginia District Highlights Breakfast in Weeklong Celebrations

Food & Nutrition Service professionals in Virginia’s Chesterfield County Public Schools (CCPS) went above and beyond for National School Breakfast Week this year. Their engaging breakfast program promotions helped boost school breakfast participation by 31% over the same time-frame last year! With a full schedule of programs available, school staff and parents were encouraged to make this week exciting and informative, highlighting the benefits and opportunities for students to enjoy a nourishing meal every morning at school.

Davis Elementary Noel and Ethan
Davis Elementary School students who participated in school breakfast during NSBW had a chance at winning these fun emoji backpacks!

Every student who ate breakfast during the week was entered to win raffle prizes. Keeping with the “I Heart School Breakfast” theme developed by the School Nutrition Association, prizes were emoji backpacks filled with fun surprises and two movie and concession gift cards. Administrators and teachers were encouraged to join their students for breakfast. Students, and in some cases, teachers, wore pajamas on Friday as another fun breakfast perk. Each morning, intercom announcements reminded students to participate in the various raffles, contests and events going on throughout the week.

Featured videos and Facebook Live sessions were held on the district’s social media platforms and websites. Using this year’s “I Heart School Breakfast” theme, District Chef Sarah Church was Live on Facebook showing off the fun and exciting breakfast menu items showcased at CCPS.  The district’s Specialist for Student Wellness, Rachel Bulifant, held fun and informative activities to engage with students about the importance of healthy meals and physical activity for growing bodies.


Sharon Rucker, Principal at Providence Elementary School, said that adding breakfast carts in the hallway has totally changed the way students enjoy breakfast. As recent as this past October, lines for breakfast could be extremely long, causing late mornings. But after the new carts were implemented in November, more students are participating and enjoying the independence to choose their own items, enter their codes and move along.

“They pick their food, enter their own number and they’re all back in class before the tardy bell rings, so the teachers are just as excited about it as the students,” said Rucker. “Even the parents got feedback about how cool this new breakfast program was.”

Virginia’s First Lady Pamela Northam hands out Grab and Go Breakfast bags and helps students choose their breakfast items at Providence Elementary.

Special guests, including Virginia’s First Lady Pamela Northam, met with students from Providence Elementary School to see a Breakfast in the Classroom program in action. According to Debbie Shiflett, Supervisor of Food and Nutrition at CCPS, the district offers a variety of breakfast options to ensure all students have access to a healthy school breakfast, including Breakfast in the Classroom, Breakfast After the Bell, Second Chance Breakfast in addition to the grab and go breakfast provided by hallway kiosks and the schools’ cafeterias.

“Solving childhood hunger is a critical component to healthy early childhood development,” said Northam. “We’re proud of the work our partners and school divisions are doing to expand and strengthen breakfast programs across the state.”


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