Louisiana Farm to School Programs: Evidence from the 2019 Farm to School Census

Maria Bampasidou, wmckinzie

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Farm to School (F2S) programs are initiatives participated in by schools with the intent to promote healthy lifestyle choices among students and introduce agricultural lessons. The three main components of F2S programs are local food procurement, school gardens and educational activities. In this report we present the findings from the 2019 F2S Census for the Louisiana public school districts.

Louisiana’s public school system is comprised of 68 public school districts, with 64 districts representing parishes and four districts representing cities. At the conclusion of the 2018-2019 school year, the Louisiana public school system was comprised of 1,259 schools that served 638,959 students. The number of students in each race category appear below.

White Black Hispanic Asian Two Races Native American Pacific Islander
FEB 2019 302,965 (47%) 254,247 (40%) 48,600 (8%) 10,306 (2%) 18,046 (3%) 4,270 (1%) 525 (0%)

The F2S Census, conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, provides information regarding schools’ interest and implementation of F2S activities. As of 2019 (2018-2019 SY), there were 37 public school districts in Louisiana that indicated participation in F2S activities with 606 documented programs. This a 298% increase from the 2013-2014 SY, where only 152 programs were documented.

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F2S reaches more students. F2S programs are primarily targeted towards elementary aged children, with 70% of school districts participating in F2S indicating that their programs reach students in kindergarten through fifth grade. However, F2S programs have started to reach older children in recent years.

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F2S offers a variety of activities. School districts throughout Louisiana have implemented various F2S activities, with the intent of strengthening children's relationship with agriculture. The most commonly implemented activities during the 2018-2019 school year include local food procurement, promoting local foods, using food coaches and establishing edible and educational school gardens.

For more information, including tables, please see PDF.

8/8/2022 8:40:45 PM
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