For Immediate Release
November 3, 2008

More schools promote healthy eating habits through expanded federal fresh fruit & vegetable program

Schools statewide receive a total of $1.16 to increase fruit & vegetable offerings; More students have access to healthy eating choices

SPRINGFIELD — The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) announced today that 39 new schools have joined the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program, joining 29 schools already participating and will share more than $1.16 million to buy additional fresh fruits and vegetables. The expansion of the federally funded Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Program (FFVP) is intended to allow more students to eat healthy at school during the 2008-9 school year on a daily basis.

“By expanding the program to additional schools, we can increase the number of students who have access to fresh fruits and vegetables at school,” said State Superintendent of Education Christopher A. Koch. “When students combine healthy eating habits with daily exercise, the results can benefit them for a lifetime.”

The 68 schools participating in the FFVP will share equally in more than $1.16 million based on each school’s student enrollment numbers. The program requires the same amount be allocated for each student in participating schools. Program funding runs through June 30, 2009.  

FFVP provides all students in participating schools access to a variety of free fresh fruits and vegetables throughout the school day. It allows schools to make available the additional produce anytime during the regular school day, except during breakfast and lunch when the School Lunch and Breakfast Programs are in effect. The idea is to expose students to lifelong healthy eating habits. For example, schools can incorporate nutrition education into numerous daily classroom activities such as math, health, geography and science, by developing lesson plans involving fruits and vegetables.

According to the Fruits & Vegetables – More Matters, a public health initiative sponsored by Produce for Better Health Foundation (PBH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over half of all elementary students nationwide eat no fruit on any given day and one-quarter of all vegetables eaten by elementary students are French fries. The national initiative encourages children and adults alike to eat more fresh fruits and vegetables. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) recommends children eat at least one-and-half cups of fruits and two-and-a-half cups of vegetables everyday.

The USDA first piloted the program in 2002 and it was recently expanded to include all states for the 2008-2009 school year. More than 100 schools statewide applied for the program. Each school will be reimbursed on a monthly basis for allowable expenses up to the school’s total awarded amount. The fresh produce purchased under this program cannot be used to replace fruits or vegetables already being served to students at breakfast or lunch.

The complete list of 68 schools in the Fresh Fruits & Vegetable Program is below. The 39 new schools are marked with an asterisk.  A map of the selected schools is available online at

*Maple Grove Elementary School, Joppa-Maple Grove Unit SD 38

Meridian Elementary School, Meridian CUSD 101

*Cobden Elementary School, Cobden Unit SD 17

Jonesboro Elementary School, Jonesboro CCSD 43

*West Side Grade School, Effingham CUSD 40

*Loves Park Elementary School, Harlem Unit SD 122

*Thomasboro Grade School, Thomasboro CCSD 130

*Madison Park Elementary School, Litchfield CUSD 12

Nokomis South Middle School, Nokomis CUSD 22
*Patoka Elementary School, Patoka CUSD 100
*Field Elementary School, Centralia SD 135

South Central Elementary School-Kinmundy, South Central CUSD 401

*Bronson Center, Kaskaskia Special Education District

Nashville Grade School, Nashville CCSD 49

*St Ann, Archdiocese of Chicago

*Providence Englewood, Archdiocese of Chicago

*John F Kennedy Elementary School, Schiller Park SD 81

*Northwest Institute For Contemporary Learning, Inc.

Veterans Memorial Middle School, Cook County SD 130

*Brooks Middle School, Harvey Public SD 152

Brookwood Middle School, Brookwood SD167

*Evangelical Christian School

*Paragon Monument One of Higher Learning
*United Educational Cultural Academy
*SPEED Program For Adaptive Learning, SPEED SEJA 802
*New Life Celebration Christian Academy, New Life Celebration Church of God
*True Vine Christian Academy, Bellwood
*Glenwood School, Glenwood
*Morrill Elementary Math & Science School, City of Chicago SD 299
Inter-American Elementary Magnet School, City of Chicago SD 299
*UNO Charter School, UNO Charter School Network
Namaste Charter School, Chicago
Bent Elementary School, Bloomington Public Schools
*Reskin Elementary School, Marquardt SD 15
Anne M Jeans Elementary School, CCSD 180
*Gallatin Elementary School, Gallatin CUSD 7
Allendale Elementary School, Allendale CCSD 17
South Elementary School, Wabash CUSD 348
Wayne City Elementary School, Wayne City CUSD 100
*Johnsonville Elementary School, North Wayne CUSD 200
Akin Community Consolidated Elementary School, Akin CCSD 91
*Astoria Elementary School, Astoria CUSD 1
*Dallas City Elementary School, Dallas ESD 327
Bushnell-Prairie City Elementary School, Bushnell-Prairie City CUSD 170
MacArthur Early Childhood Center, Macomb CUSD 185
*West Central Early Childhood Center, West Central CUSD 235
Princeton Christian Academy, Princeton Bible Church
*Leepertown Elementary School, Leepertown CCSD 175
DeSoto Elementary School, DeSoto CCSD 86
Unity Point Elementary School, Unity Point CCSD 140
Highland Elementary School, SD 46
*Wanda Kendall Elementary School, Iroquois CCUSD 9
*St Anne Elementary School, St Anne CCSD 256
Oak Terrace Elementary School, North Shore SD 112
*Northwestern Elementary School, Northwestern CUSD 2
Bethalto West Elementary School, Bethalto CUSD 8
*Hartford Elementary School, Wood River-Hartford ESD 15
Ringwood School Primary Center, Johnsburg CUSD 12
*Perandoe Special Education District, Perandoe Special Education District
*Pleasant Hill Elementary School, Pleasant Hill SD 69
Peoria Heights Grade School, Peoria Heights CUSD 325
Princeville Elementary School, Princeville CUSD 326
*George O Barr School, Silvis SD 34
*Eagle Ridge School, Carbon Cliff-Barstow SD 36
Bowlesburg Elementary School, East Moline SD 37
Frances Willard Elementary School, Rock Island SD 41
Fairmont School, Fairmont SD 89
*Illinois School for the Visually Impaired, Illinois Department of Human Services

For additional information on the importance of eating fruits and vegetables, including nutritional tips and recipes for parents, visit:

For additional information on the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable program, visit: