USDA Awards over $70 Million in Grants, Maine’s Fryeburg Academy among awardees

Boston, MA, July 26, 2022 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced it is awarding more than $10 million in Farm to School Grants to 123 projects across the country. Additionally, for the first time, the department is empowering states with $60 million in non-competitive grants to develop stronger and sustainable Farm to School programs over the next four years. Both actions will help more kids nationwide eat healthy, homegrown foods.
The Fryeburg Academy has been awarded $49,693. The Fryeburg Academy Edible Garden Project represents an expansion of the existing edible garden, as well as related curricular and extracurricular agricultural education offerings that are currently available to 9-12th grade students as part of the science department and Outdoor Learning and Research Center. Students of Fryeburg Academy will grow and prepare vegetables in partnership with the Academy’s Food Services Department, and will serve as ambassadors for the nutritious, local food that they grow. The collective agricultural programs are intended to provide opportunities for science, wellness, and vocational education, building on the existing program that is available to district middle school students, and connecting Fryeburg Academy students to local farms and agricultural organizations.

“We’re so excited for this opportunity because it will allow us to connect our students to fresh, nutritious foods grown by their peers right on campus,” said Jennifer Solter-Jones, Fryeburg Academy Garden Manager.
Farm to School increases the amount of locally produced foods served through child nutrition programs, while also educating children about how their foods are harvested and made. Various child nutrition operators can participate in farm to school, from states and tribal nations to schools and community organizations. 

“The expansion of Farm to School is more important than ever for our kids,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “When schools and local producers work together, children benefit from higher-quality foods on their plates and program operators have stable sources for the products they need.” Vilsack added farm to school is an investment in the next generation and one of many ways the department is advancing nutrition security – the consistent, equitable access to healthy and affordable foods that promote well-being.

The 123 projects funded by the fiscal year 2022 competitive grants will serve more than 3 million children at more than 5,000 schools in 44 states and the District of Columbia.  Further, USDA acknowledges that many people have been historically underserved and marginalized through unfair food systems. The projects selected by the department reflect its commitment to transforming food systems to be more equitable through Farm to School:

  • An estimated 62% of students served by these projects are eligible for free and reduced-priced school meals.
  • 40% of projects serve rural areas or economically disadvantaged areas.
  • Nearly 30% of organizations are led by Black, Indigenous, and People of Color, with projects serving those same communities.
  • Seven projects are tribal nations serving Native American communities.
Since the USDA Farm to School Program’s inception in 2013, the department has awarded nearly $75 million in Farm to School Grants, funding more than 1,000 projects across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, and Puerto Rico. These projects have reached over 25 million students in nearly 60,000 schools. For more information on how your community can get involved with Farm to School activities, please visit the FNS website. 

Additionally, as announced last month, the department’s $60 million non-competitive grants for states will allow them to better assist program operators in purchasing and using more local foods in meals for kids between Fiscal Years 2023-2026. The resources will also expand agricultural education for children. More information about the distribution of funds is coming soon.

“States and school districts with strong Farm to School programs have been more resilient in the face of recent supply chain disruptions, compared to operators lacking relationships with local producers,” said Stacy Dean, deputy under secretary for Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services. “The Farm to School program deserves to be at the forefront of long-term solutions that operators can lean on to ensure nutritious, local products are always within reach.” 

When schools source foods locally, it supports American farmers and strengthens the economy. USDA surveyed school food authorities nationwide in the 2019 Farm to School Census. According to the findings, in school year 2018-2019, school districts purchased nearly $1.3 billion in local fruits, vegetables, and other foods, totaling approximately 20% of all school food purchases. 

USDA touches the lives of all Americans each day in so many positive ways. In the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA is transforming America’s food system with a greater focus on more resilient local and regional food production, ensuring access to healthy and nutritious food in all communities, building new markets and streams of income for farmers and producers using climate smart food and forestry practices, making historic investments in infrastructure and clean energy capabilities in rural America, and committing to equity across the Department by removing systemic barriers and building a workforce more representative of America. To learn more, visit www.usda.gov.
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List of 5 news stories.

  • FA Becomes the First FFA Chapter Member in Western Maine

    Fryeburg Academy is pleased to announce it has joined the National Future Farmers of America Organization (FFA) as an initiative to grow its agricultural programming. “After several months of research, it was important to me to bring FFA to Fryeburg because it will open up more opportunities for our students involved in agriculture education here,” says Jennifer Solter-Jones, FA’s science instructor and school farm manager. “Whether it be through leadership development, new learning opportunities, or a chance to serve our community, this organization directly ties in with what we are trying to do with our program, so it is a natural fit to have our own chapter.”

  • FA Announces Fall 2022-23 Semester I Honor/High Honor Roll

    We are pleased to announce students who have earned the academic distinction of Honors and High Honors for Semester I in the fall of 2022-23:

    Grade 9-Honors
    Allain, Alexander
    Artigau Aleu, Francesc
    Barnaby, Tucker
    Bellamy, Kiley
    Bowen, Adger
    Boyd, Cody
    Brown, Jordan
    Canfield, Tyler
    Clement, Megan
    Drew, Dilen
    Drew, George
    Eveleth, Jacob
    Guthro, Thomas
    Han, Holym
    Hayes, Jared
    Iacozili, Merrik
    Kubichko, Jaxson
    Madrazo Zertuche, Eduardo
    Massey, Richard
    McBride, Rylan
    Meier, Andrew
    Mitchell, Gaige
    Moser, Kaelan
    Patino Aguayo, Jeronimo
    Pierce, Noah
    Santos, Sharis
    Snow, Caleb
    Spofford, Connor
    Spofford, Haley
    Twigg-Smith, William



     
  • FA's Fall Sports Assembly Honors Student-Athletes

    On Wednesday, November 16th, Fryeburg Academy celebrated the fall sports season with its annual fall sports awards assembly held in the Leura Hill Eastman Performing Arts Center. The following student-athletes were recognized for their outstanding performance during the fall 2022-23 season:
  • Joseph R. Manning Appointed as Fryeburg Academy’s Next Head of School

    FRYEBURG, ME, OCTOBER 26, 2022— Fryeburg Academy’s Board of Trustees is very pleased and excited to announce that Joseph R. Manning has been appointed as the Academy’s next Head of School. The Trustees' unanimous decision resulted from a rigorous search process by the Board’s Search Committee, which worked closely with internationally renowned search firm Carney Sandoe and Associates, based in Boston, Massachusetts. The Committee and consultants conducted a stakeholder survey, met on campus with over sixty stakeholder groups, authored a report on the next Head of School’s necessary traits, and engaged with Manning through extensive interviews. 

  • Erin P. Mayo Appointed as Next Head of School at Doane Academy

    The Board of Trustees of Doane Academy announce that Erin Pike Mayo will become the next Head of School, on July 1, 2023, the start of Doane Academy’s 187th year.

Fryeburg Academy

FRYEBURG ACADEMY
745 Main Street
Fryeburg, ME 04037
p. (207) 935-2001      
f.  (207) 935-5013      
admissions@fryeburgacademy.org
Fryeburg Academy is an independent boarding and day school, serving grades 9-12 and postgraduate. We invite you to explore our site and learn how students from around the globe find their place in the world through our exceptional academic, art, and athletic programs.