No classes at DMPS last Friday. It was a designated professional development day for teachers – AND support staff, in the case of the Food & Nutrition Department.
At North High School, more than 300 nutritionists were busy on the second of a two-day event called Eat Better/Learn Better, brought to you by the American Egg Board and the Iowa Egg Council.
Thursday’s egg-citing agenda featured some VIP visitors at Moore Elementary where mascot STEM Shelly helped egg the kids on to gobble up their egg-centric lunch.
Friday’s was a menu of keynote speakers at North that included Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds and Iowa Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Julie Kenney.
Other activities focused on the importance of protein-rich breakfasts as fuel for a day of learning and social media pointers to aid in whetting students’ appetites for healthy, thought-provoking meals.
Attendees were treated to both breakfast and lunch as the servers were served for a change and some roles reversed.
“Just so you know, I’ll be in the kitchen today washing dishes,” DMPS Director of Food & Nutrition (and part-time pearl diver) Amanda Miller told the department staff assembled in the school auditorium Friday morning. “And don’t forget to get a selfie with STEM Shelly at lunchtime. She’s a real egghead!”
The DMPS Food & Nutrition Program was selected by the AEB from 35 school districts across the country that applied to be recognized by the Eat Better/Learn Better promotion. DMPS expanded its Breakfast in the Classroom program this year, and is incorporating more eggs into school menus to help students start each day with their sunny sides up. The district serves approximately 36,000 meals daily and eggs are featured at all 64 schools.
Besides being incredibly, flexibly edible, eggs are also affordable, especially when the Iowa Egg Council donates 33,000 eggs to DMPS, one for each of the 33,000 students in the district.
DMPS Food & Nutrition is whipping up a whole new way of thinking about school chow. Like their new slogan says, it’s More Than Meals.