Rocky View Schools (RVS) is redirecting $90,000 of its School Nutrition Program (SNP) funding to the Airdrie, Cochrane, and Chestermere food banks.
An additional $37,500 of SNP funding has been earmarked for rural schools to ensure equitable access for vulnerable families in the community.
RVS board chair Fiona Gilbert says the division welcomed the announcement from Alberta Education to give school boards the flexibility to determine how best to use their remaining school nutrition funding during the pandemic.
“The freedom to allocate funds differently across our unique communities will have a substantial impact on our ability to reach those students who may be experiencing food insecurities during this particularly challenging time,” says Gilbert.
RVS has committed to donating $10,000 to each of the three food banks in April, May, and June. The jurisdiction, too, will be providing rural schools already offering breakfast programs or on the waitlist for funding with a stipend of $2,500 each month, to support their students through locally-identified distribution processes.
Schools operating breakfast programs also have been given the green light to repurpose any remaining funds donated by the Breakfast Clubs of Canada and the President’s Choice Children Charity as they see fit.
Staff was quick to mobilize upon school closures to dispense pre-purchased food to RVS’ high-needs families.
At the direction of Alberta Education, RVS will reassess its SNP funding levels in June, with an eye on ensuring that all its 2019/20 funding is expended before the end of the school year