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Healthy School Food Pathway

Scratch Cooking for the Future

Chef Ann Foundation (CAF) and California’s Community Colleges have partnered in the development of a pre-apprenticeship, apprenticeship, and fellowship program that will support education and workforce development for healthy school food in California. The programs will provide California’s Community College students, incumbent school food service staff, and displaced or transitional workers in related industries with education and hands-on experience in operating healthy K-12 school meal programs.

The Application for the Pre-Apprenticeship is now open:

Healthy School Food Pathway

Scratch Cooking for the Future

Chef Ann Foundation (CAF) and California’s Community Colleges have partnered in the development of a pre-apprenticeship, apprenticeship, and fellowship program that will support education and workforce development for healthy school food in California. The programs will provide California’s Community College students, incumbent school food service staff, and displaced or transitional workers in related industries with education and hands-on experience in operating healthy K-12 school meal programs.

The Application for the Pre-Apprenticeship is now open:

The Opportunity

At a time of recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, significant investment in climate solutions through food and agricultural system reforms, renewed momentum across multiple social justice movements, and the prioritization of workforce development through upskilling and living wage job creation, school food is being recognized as a key lever at the nexus of multiple priorities.

California became the first state in the country to enact universal school meals. In the same budget, the state has chosen to make significant investments through farm to school grants, school kitchen infrastructure upgrades, climate smart agriculture, workforce development, and many other areas of innovation. School food leaders are a critical link in realizing the potential of these investments.

The Healthy School Food Pathway program supports workforce readiness for California’s Community College students, as well as incumbent and displaced workers, to expand the pipeline for the next generation of school food leaders. From entry-level positions through school food management, these professionals will impact millions of children with greater access to fresh, healthy food. Across 1,037 California public school districts, skilled culinary professionals will support transformative change from within the school food system.

The Purpose

Making the transition from heat-and-serve to scratch-cook programs requires a dedicated and informed school food service team. While there are resources available to positively impact school meal programs, the key to transformative change is skilled labor with mastery in 5 key areas: Food, Finance, Facilities, Human Resources, and Marketing.

The Purpose

Making the transition from heat-and-serve to scratch-cook programs requires a dedicated and informed school food service team. While there are resources available to positively impact school meal programs, the key to transformative change is skilled labor with mastery in 5 key areas: Food, Finance, Facilities, Human Resources, and Marketing.

The future of school food will be led by diverse, prepared, and confident leaders with in-depth knowledge and experience in developing and administering successful scratch-cook meal programs. Without training, it can be difficult for a district to know where to start and how to continue to take manageable steps in pursuit of their long-term goals. Data indicate that scratch cooking for school meals can improve school meal participation, student health and wellness, academic performance, and financial sustainability of meal programs, while also supporting the local economy and improving environmental impacts.

Program Benefits

Check Out the Video Below to Learn More!

Pre-Apprenticeship

The Healthy School Food Pathway program is excited to welcome its second cohort of pre-apprentices in Fall 2022. Pre-Apprentices will be paid $15/hr for the on-the-job-learning (Subject to change based on county minimum wage).

The program lasts 7 weeks and includes:

  • 4 School Food Institute courses: 20 hours (4 hours pre-read, 4 hours homework, 12 hours online learning)
  • 2 virtual learning sessions: 3 hours (2 sessions, 1.5 hours each)
  • On-the-job learning: 84 hours (12 hours a week)

We are now accepting applications until September 9th with a program start date of October 17th.


Apprenticeship

The Healthy School Food Pathway program is excited to welcome its first cohort of apprentices in Fall 2022. Please note that you must complete the pre-apprenticeship to join the apprenticeship. If you fit the requirements, please reach out to the Chef Ann Foundation. Pre-Apprentices will be paid $16/hr for the on-the-job-learning (Subject to change based on county minimum wage).

The program will be over one school year (~9 months) and include:

  • 7 School Food Institute courses: 35 hours (7 hours pre-read, 7 hours homework, 21 hours online learning)

  • Institute of Child Nutrition (ICN) Courses: 64 hours

  • 18 virtual learning sessions: 54 hours (1 hour pre-read, 1 hour session, 1 hour homework)

  • On-the-job learning: 24 hours a week


Fellowship

COMING SOON

Spring 2023

Job Description

Interested in applying for the pre-apprenticeship program? Click here or download the full job description.


Discover More

Salad Bars To Schools

Salad Bars to Schools (SB2S) supports schools in expanding their commitment to serving fresh fruits and vegetables by donating salad bars to school districts across the United States.

School Food Institute

The School Food Institute gives school food service professionals and childhood nutrition advocates the in-depth training, operational skills, and strategic vision necessary to make school food fresh, healthy, and sustainable.

The Lunch Box

The Lunch Box is an online resource that is dedicated to supporting school districts and food service teams in transitioning their food programs from relying on processed foods to incorporating scratch cooking and fresh ingredients.

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