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How We Began

In 1999, the Nutrition for Learning Committee was formed asa result of the growing amount of literature and awareness regarding thepositive effects of nutrition on a child’s ability to learn at school. The needfor school-based breakfast programs and their ability to improve a child’sacademic outcome has been well documented.

Sr. Peggy Butts was a founding member of this committee.During her time in the Senate, she was able to obtained Federal funding topilot breakfast programs for two years. In September 1999, ten schools began abreakfast program, and it has been growing steadily and with great success. Wenow have breakfast programs in 57 schools sites, making up 95% of the schoolsin the Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board.

You may ask yourself, “Why do we need this program?”

There are many reasons why a student is not having anutritious breakfast prior to leaving for school.

Did you know that?...

31%of elementary school students and 62% of secondary school students do not eat anutritious breakfast before heading to school in the morning?
 

There are many reasons why a child does not have a breakfast prior to coming to school, including:

  • A lack of time, or not making the time to eat,
  • Many students are not able to eat first thing in the morning. However, once they arrive at school, they are ready to eat.
  • In many families, parents are absent in the early morning because of work, and children are often left to fend for themselves. The children may not be making breakfast a priority.
  • Role models at home that are skipping breakfast.
  • Some children have breakfast in the morning, but after a bus ride to school, they are ready for another breakfast snack.
  • For some homes, there is a lack of food at home.

 

 

The Benefits of Having Breakfast:

As a child is learning and growing, they need fuel for theirmind and body.  Research has shown usover and over again that there is a strong link between nutrition andlearning.  The evidence is seen in theclassroom; children who eat well performbetter in school. Those who do not eat enough throughout the day are moretired, tend to have a shorter attention span, and are not reaching theirmaximum potential at school.

Research consistently links aregular consumption of a nutritious breakfast with improved cognitivefunctioning, increased school attendance, decreased disruptive behavior,improve physical health, fuller social relationships and an overall sense ofwell being.

For whatever reason a child is not having breakfast at home, we knowthat all students will benefit in the classroom by having breakfast. TheBreakfast program is Universal, and is open to all students, free of charge, andis non-stigmatizing.