The province announced Monday it was launching a pilot program aimed at preparing students for a healthy future.
The nutrition program will be initiated in 14 school boards across the province, including the public and Catholic systems in Calgary and Edmonton.
“We know that good jobs begin with a good education. Access to a daily nutritious meal can really help children’s grades and prepare them for a healthy and successful future,” Premier Rachel Notley said. “That’s why we are proud to introduce a targeted school nutrition program.”
“It’s hard to learn when you’re hungry,” Education Minister David Eggen added. “Research clearly shows that students who have a healthy and nutritious diet have more energy and are able to better focus in class.”
“While the immediate effect of the program will be felt in the classroom, we also want to build students’ capacity for lifelong healthy eating and nutrition.”
The cost of the program, which is part of the Government of Alberta’s Future Ready initiative, is being funded from Alberta Education’s existing budget.
Each of the 14 publicly funded school boards will receive $250,000 in grant funding to assist with the pilot. The government said results will help inform decisions regarding nutrition programs for schools across the province in 2017-18.
School boards participating in nutrition pilot include:
- Calgary Board of Education
- Calgary Catholic School District
- Canadian Rockies Regional Division
- Edmonton Catholic Schools
- Edmonton Public Schools
- High Prairie School Division
- Holy Family Catholic Regional Division
- Livingstone Range School Division
- Medicine Hat School District
- Northern Lights School District
- Red Deer Public District
- St. Paul Regional School Division
- Westwind School Division
- Wetaskiwin Regional Division