Food Forests for Schools

Food Forests for Schools

Changing the Landscape of Education

The Education Fund's Food Forests for Schools initiative is at the cutting-edge of nutrition and environmental sustainability education. In 2012, The Education Fund made history by installing the first Food Forest in a public elementary school in the nation. Today, 16 of our 51 elementary school gardens are perennial, edible landscapes, each occupying an impressive 3,500-10,000 square feet of school grounds. The Education Fund's Food Forests are prolific food systems producing enough fresh, organic produce for students to take home weekly harvests, while still providing enough fruits and vegetables to incorporate in classroom nutrition lessons, as well as the cafeteria lunch menu! This year we are on our way to reaching 20 Food Forests in schools making us the only program in the nation with this level of experience!

 

These Food Forests are cutting-edge sustainable food growing systems. Instead of traditional raised beds or boxes, the Food Forests abound with perennial, edible trees, bushes, herbs, vines, and ground covers. An abundance of rare, tropical, gourmet crops can be found year-round nestled among winding paths.

More than 48,000 harvest bags have been sent home to families served by Food Forests for Schools. Students receive harvest bags filled with kale, collard greens, fresh herbs, and rare, tropical treats such as cranberry hibiscus and Okinawa spinach. Sometimes they start eating it right out of the bag!

In the 2017-18 school year, The Education Fund continues to make history as we will reach a total of 20 schools with Food Forests grown with The Education Fund, along with student-run harvest clubs sending fresh produce home at least weekly. This makes Miami-Dade County Public Schools a national leader with the greatest number of Food Forests compared to any other school district. And with 51 schools all sprouting gardens, The Education Fund is setting the bar high.

Students thrive in all of our 51 garden schools.  

The Education Fund's Food Forests for Schools initiative provides a perfect environment for students to learn by experiencing nature. Students put concepts into practice as they explore, observe, and eat their way through the gardens and Food Forests. 

 

For more information, please contact:

Eddie Recinos
Food Forests for Schools
Senior Program Manager
erecinos@educationfund.org      

Debi La Belle
Food Forests for Schools
Program Manager
dlablelle@educationfund.org 

Made possible with support from: