ADE Director's Communication Memo Form

Memo Number : FIN-09-017

Date Created : 09/10/2008


Co-op Directors
Elementary Principals
other: Child Nutrition Directors

Type of Memo: Regulatory
Response Required: Optional
Section:   Fiscal and Administrative Services - William J. Goff, Assistant Commissioner
Funding Opportunity - Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program SY 2008-09

Regulatory Authority:
Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act (42 U.S.C. 1769 (g))

Contact Person:
Sheila Brown

Phone Number:


The Food, Energy and Conservation Act of 2008, (Farm Bill) amended the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act by adding Section 19, the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP). Section 19 permanently authorized the program nationwide, consolidated all prior operations under Section 19, and provided a significant funding increase, beginning with $40 million nationwide in FY2009.

The Arkansas Department of Education (ADE), Child Nutrition Unit (CNU), is accepting applications from elementary schools that want to participate in the program beginning in October and continuing for School Year 2008-2009.

This is a United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) program which provides reimbursement for fresh fruits and fresh vegetables served free to students during the school day (not before school or after school) and outside the lunch and breakfast meals. The fresh fruits and vegetables CANNOT BE SERVED AT REGULAR STUDENT MEAL PERIODS.

• create healthier school environments by providing healthier food choices
• expand the variety of fruits and vegetables children experience
• increase children’s fruit and vegetable consumption
• make a difference in children’s diets to impact the student's present and future health

• Must be an elementary school
• Operate the National School Lunch Program
• Submit an application for participation
• Have 50% or more of the school’s students eligible for free/reduced price meals
• Be chosen based on the percentage of free/reduced price students with the highest priority given to schools with the highest percentages of low-income students, to the maximum extent practicable.

The selection of elementary schools will be based on applications submitted by schools and evaluated using criteria required by federal regulations. This grant is for the period October 1, 2008, to June 30, 2009. For School Year 2008–2009, the level of funding provided is based on October 2007 enrollment at a level ranging between $50-$75 per student.

Pre-school enrollment will only be funded if it is a part of a funded elementary school (i.e. included in the LEA’s October 2007 Pre-K enrollment).

To be considered for this program, complete and return Attachment A –Arkansas Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program Application–SY 2008-2009. The application MUST be RECEIVED by September 26, 2008.

Return to:
Sheila Brown, MSE, RD, LD
Child Nutrition Unit, Arkansas Department of Education
2020 West 3rd Street, Suite 404
Little Rock, AR 72205

Although the federal criteria for selection of the elementary schools chosen to participate requires that the schools have at least 50% of the students eligible for free or reduced price meals, the criteria gives priority to schools (to the maximum extent practicable) that have the highest percentages of low-income students. All schools concerned with the nutritional well-being of students are encouraged to submit an application. Please keep in mind that schools may be selected with lower percentages of free/reduced price eligible children, if the implementation plan is innovative and shows commitment. In the application narrative, please give details about any partnerships that would provide non-federal resources for the acquisition, handling, promotion or distribution of fresh fruits and vegetables or other support that contributes to the purposes of the program.

Funds are to be used primarily to purchase, prepare and distribute fresh fruits and fresh vegetables that will be made available AT NO CHARGE TO ALL STUDENTS in the school at times other than lunch and/or breakfast. The program should be structured so that maximum benefits go to children. Selected schools will submit a FFVP Claim for Reimbursement to ADE, CNU, as well as any necessary supporting documentation of expenses.

Allowable Expenses from this grant include fresh fruits and fresh vegetables, non-food supplies required to implement the program (such as napkins, paper plates, etc., labor expenses for staff preparing, serving and cleaning up). Up to 10% of the school's award may be used to purchase equipment necessary to implement the program.

Funds may not be used for promotional activities, to supplement the lunch or breakfast program, for nutrition education materials, and/or activities, and indirect or administrative costs.

Because USDA is required to submit reports to Congress, schools will be expected to cooperate in any evaluations and be able to provide information about participation, purchases, costs and other information. A district’s Child Nutrition Agreement will be amended to reflect any schools in the district that are selected to participate in the program.

1) Complete an “Arkansas Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program Application–SY 2008-09” for each elementary school applying for the program – Attachment B
2) Review the “AR FFVP Application Scoring Criteria Form”– Attachment A
3) Review 'Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Handbook' - Attachment C
4) Use the “Sample Letter of Support” as needed to gather letters from partners – Attachment D

Each application narrative submitted should be specific to the school. The responses to questions should be school specific, address the selection criteria, grades served, resources available, and how the faculty and staff will work together to implement the grant, etc. Remember to include any information about partnerships schools may have that would support the program with non-federal funds. DO NOT WRITE ONE GENERIC PROPOSAL FOR THE DISTRICT and submit with individual school applications. The staffing information and signature sheet (page 7) of the application must also be completed. Applications must be completed and received by ADE, CNU, by September 26, 2008.

Incomplete applications will not be funded.

For any questions, please contact Sheila Brown, FFVP Grant Manager, at 501-324-9502.

Please consider taking part in the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program as another way to help students develop lifelong healthful eating habits.


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