Boosting School Nutrition: $30 million is being sent to rural school districts to improve meals

44 states are set to get millions of dollars to help provide healthy meals in rural schools.

Deputy Ag Secretary Xochitl Torres Small announced nearly $30 million in the form of sub-grants for more than 250 school districts across the United States, mainly small or rural districts. Each one will get up to $150,000 to help them improve the nutritional quality of their meals. It will also help modernize operations.

The investment will focus on staff training programs, kitchen updates and renovations, redesigning food prep and service areas, as well as district efforts to support nutrition professions. During the announcement, Torres Small said nutritional professionals face big challenges in rural communities.

“USDA recognizes that school nutrition professionals serve the kids in their community every day. They face real challenges in doing so, particularly in rural places. When you’ve got a smaller population and lower student size, it becomes even more difficult to be able to pull together the funds to have an operating kitchen that has all of the necessities to make sure that meals can be as healthy as possible and as tasty as possible.”

This announcement comes as many school districts across the U.S. prepare for students to return to the classroom and cafeterias in the coming days and weeks.

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