Published: Feb 03, 2011 6:19 PM EST
Updated: Feb 03, 2011 3:19 PM EST

COLLIER COUNTY- The School District of Collier County is pleased to announce that it is one of only four school districts in the state of Florida to be awarded with funds to help promote dairy’s place in a healthy school environment by increasing access to milk, cheese or yogurt.  The district received $98,700 in grant money from the Dairy Council of Florida and Florida’s dairy farmers’ Dairy Optimization Grant program Sip It, Slice It, Spoon It.  The monies will be used to purchase breakfast kiosks in schools.  A total of $373,143 in funding has been allocated between Collier, Indian River, Manatee and Miami-Dade. 

The district’s Director of Nutrition Services, Dawn Houser said the district will look to locate the mobile kiosks in strategic locations around schools where students gather, or possibly in proximity to the bus loop to provide more students an opportunity to participate in the district’s nutritional breakfast program.  “Since breakfast is served at no charge to all students, and studies have shown children who eat a healthy breakfast perform better academically, we feel that it is a win/win for the students and the district” said Houser.

The Sip It, Slice It, Spoon It Dairy Optimization Grant program is designed to help schools jumpstart healthy nutrition habits in new and unique ways.  This year’s funded projects feature:
·         Breakfast in the classroom
·         Grab and go breakfast kiosks
·         Taste and vote sampling fairs
·         Vending machines that dispense a healthy reimbursable school lunch
School districts were selected for their strong, progressive wellness focus and active participation in the Fuel Up to Play 60 Program, a national in-school health and wellness program that encourages youth to consume nutrient-rich foods (low-fat and fat-free dairy, fruits, vegetables and whole grains) and achieve 60 minutes of physical activity every day.  The program is sponsored by the National Football League and National Dairy Council in collaboration with the United States Department of Agriculture.