Chicago Schools Take Top Prize in PCRM’s Golden Carrot Awards
Millions of Americans send their kids off to school every day hoping that their child will receive a healthy school lunch. For National School Lunch Week, PCRM has rewarded several individuals that make this hope a reality with the 2007 Golden Carrot Awards.
This year’s grand prize winners are the head chefs at Betty Shabazz International Charter School (BSICS) and its sister school, Barbara Sizemore Academy of BSICS in Chicago. Stuart Spears and Glendora Green serve up an all-vegetarian menu that includes entrées such as sloppy Joes, veggie burgers and dogs, “steak” sandwiches, burritos, veggie gumbo with tofu, jerk tofu, curry tofu with noodles, and pinto beans with rice, collards, and corn bread. Soy and rice milk are available at no additional cost to students, and fresh fruit and a garden salad are provided daily. Spears and Green will receive $1,500 and their school will receive $3,500.
Golden Carrot Awards were also given to four second-place winners. Each of the second-place winners will receive $500 for themselves and $500 for their school lunch program.
- Guidance counselor Sheri DeMaris and family consumer science teacher Lisa Norley run a unique after-school program at Valley Forge Middle School in Wayne, Pa. The 35 students in the “Healthy Kids in the Kitchen” afternoon club prepare nutritious vegan meals for students in an after-school homework program. The students in the club have even created a cookbook and DVD.
- Ann Cooper, director of nutrition services at Berkeley Public Schools in Berkeley, Calif., offers more than 10,000 students a vegetarian option every day. Vegetarian items include baked pasta with fresh veggies, veggie pot pie, barbecue tofu, and veggie lo mein. Vegetarian items are promoted and encouraged through the monthly “Harvest of the Month” recipe program, which features locally grown produce.
- Dana Rigato, food service coordinator at the Jewish Day School of Metropolitan Seattle in Bellevue, Wash., serves food that is completely kosher and vegetarian. The students at this private school are offered hot vegetarian entrées plus a full salad bar featuring greens, legumes, raw vegetables, grain and lentil salads, tofu, granola, and fruit.
- Dawn Olcott, a nutritionist who works with Cambridge Public Schools in Cambridge, Mass., recently added several vegetarian items to the menu, including freshly made vegan lentil soup, veggie wraps, and vegetarian chili. Her menu also features local produce, such as apples, peaches, tomatoes, sweet potato “fries,” roasted butternut squash, and salads.