Healthy Schools Act Coalition Claims Victory
Success! The people voiced their concern and the DC City Council listened! Council Chairman (and soon-to-be Mayor) Vincent Gray’s amended budget has saved the landmark DC Healthy Schools Act. As a result, any District student in need can continue to receive a free and healthy breakfast in his or her classroom. Threatened with elimination in face of the budget deficit, yesterday's move by the Council saves this pivotal initiative – a victory not only for the children of the city, but for the city’s future as well!
Since receiving word of debilitating cuts to the D.C. Healthy Schools Act on Thanksgiving eve, a myriad of local organizations and individuals led by Earth Day Network banded together to insist that the government sustain the four-month-old program. Thanks to constituent emails, in-person visits, testimony, articles in the Washington Post and Monday’s Call-In, the hastily convened coalition persuaded the Council to continue to fund the Healthy Schools Act. The DC Healthy Schools Act, which began implementation on August 23rd, can now continue to ramp up its program of services as scheduled, including free breakfasts, up to 60 minutes of exercise a day, and an additional 10 cents per meal to pay for fresh fruits and vegetables, with an extra 5 cents on top of that as a bonus to schools who enroll in farm-to-school programs.