Wellness in the School (WITS) was introduced to PS41 in 2011. Its goal
is to provide healthier and more nutritious lunches for children eating
at the cafeteria.
How does it
work? Inspired by the model Teach For America, WITS recruits and trains
graduates of culinary schools to cook for kids in public schools. The
"Cook for Kids WITS in Residence" chef comes to PS41 to work alongside
our existing cafeteria staff to help create, inspire and support
improved salad bar choices and fresh homemade meals in our cafeteria.
This culinary graduate will be overseen by a head restaurant chef from
our community, who will come in several times during the school year for
"café days" where all students get to try new foods even if they
haven't signed on for school lunch. These dishes will incorporate all
fresh, and seasonal, local ingredients whenever possible. The students
will be able to provide their feedback on the foods they've tried.
Positive results could lead to a new item on the menu. Students are
further empowered because they can look at monthly menus and sign up for
the days they choose.
WITS is the
only organization that is approved to go into school cafeterias by the
NYC Department of Education. While WITS must work from a mandatory
approved ingredients list from DOE's SchoolFood, WITS is able to
advocate for and get healthier items such as more fresh produce, better
salad bars, grass-fed beef days, and use of only olive oil in cooking.
WITS staff is also able to educate our kids about nutrition through
workshops in the classroom.
Click here for more information about WITS.
To learn more about the Wellness Committee at PS41 including volunteer opportunities, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
WITS Cooking Labs
PS41 Farmers Market Recipes
Corn & Tomato Scramble