Patoka School Chosen for "Breakfast After the Bell" Program: Rep. Cavaletto Chief Co-Sponsor of This Pilot Program Administered Through the University of Illinois Extension


Patoka School cooks who make the program work are (l-r) front row: Tammy Adams, Linda Felchlia, Mary Vosholler, and Kristi Beckman. Back row is Superintendent David Rademacher, Rep. Cavaletto, and Ashley Hoffman, U of I Extension.

State Rep. John Cavaletto attended an open house at Patoka School this morning to observe a new school breakfast program. This pilot program called "Breakfast After the Bell" was established with legislation co-sponsored by Rep. Cavaletto, who serves as Republican Spokesperson on the Elementary & Secondary Education: Licensing, Administration & Oversight Committee as well as the Appropriations-Elementary & Secondary Education Committee.

"I spent 38 years working in education as a teacher, coach and principal, and I know first-hand the importance of having breakfast and its impact on learning," said Rep. Cavaletto. "Not only is there better academic achievement from students who eat breakfast, but the research shows that there is better cognitive performance and a decrease in behavioral problems," he added.

This program will start in the 2017-2018 school year and will bring an additional $42 million in federal reimbursements to Illinois. The "Breakfast After the Bell" program provides schools the flexibility to choose a delivery model that works for them. Some of the options include Grab 'N' Go (where students can pick up a bag breakfast before or after school and eat in the cafeteria, on their way to class or at their desk), In the Classroom (where school nutrition staff deliver meals to the classroom as the school day begins), and Second Chance (where the meal is served in the hallway or cafeteria after first period).

Some of the community groups supporting this pilot program include the Illinois Parent-Teacher Association, the Central Illinois Foodbank, the YMCA and Catholic Charities.

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