It has been proven that starting student’s day with a healthy breakfast is crucial for their academic success. Supporting research has shown that students who consume a healthy breakfast daily have overall improved development, classroom behavior, and attendance with fewer visits to the school nurse.
Unfortunately, most kids tend to skip breakfast each morning due to; not being hungry first thing in the morning, running late, or choosing to socialize in the hallway with friends instead. The social stigma of “only low-income students” participate in school breakfast can also convince students to not participate.
How Can a Breakfast Cart Boost Participation?
What is a breakfast cart?
A breakfast cart is a mobile serving station designed to easily transport grab ‘n go breakfast foods to high traffic areas where students congregate. The mobile concept offers students an alternative location, besides the cafeteria, to acquire a healthy school breakfast before heading to class.
How do breakfast carts work to increase student participation?
School administrations have quickly learned that students tend to gravitate toward quick on-the-go meal options vs the standard meal options. Using a breakfast cart not only offers students grab ‘n’ go meal options, but it also transports the meals to high traffic areas like gymnasiums, front entrances, or hallway intersections where students typically tend to hang out. Bringing the food to the students allows them to not have to miss out on socializing with their friends to consume a healthy breakfast. The schools food service staff members can operate the cart before the school day starts, after first bell, or between classes; giving students a second chance to participate.
When is it best to use a breakfast cart?
- If the school cafeteria is located apart from where students typically congregate.
- If the schools cafeteria gets to be congested quickly, or is too small to accommodate all of your students at one time.
- If the breakfast menu can easily be served as grab ‘n’ go meals.
- Typically, the breakfast cart concept works best in middle schools or high schools.
Successful Breakfast Cart Programs
Grant County Schools
Kathy Craven, Food Service Director – Grant County Schools, worked with Hubert’s team of education experts to implement a school breakfast cart program. When asked if her school has seen an improvement in their student participation after implementing their breakfast cart her response was,”We are very pleased with the breakfast carts. We are halfway into our school year, and we have seen a 32% increase in breakfast participation alone. We are serving an extra 110 meals a day just out of the cart. I am hoping to add a breakfast cart to my High School within the next year.”