WEST virginia legislature
2019 regular session
House Bill 2794
By Delegates Lovejoy, Rohrbach, Miller, Hornbuckle, Canestraro, Williams, Robinson, Rowan, S. Brown and Byrd
[Introduced January 31, 2019;
to the Committee on Education then Finance.]
A BILL to amend the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, by adding thereto a new section, designated §18-5D-6, relating to establishing the Summer Feeding for All initiative; providing findings; directing a county-by-county assessment of nonschool day student food insecurities; empowering county school boards to develop initiatives and programs for feeding students in need during summer and other nonschool time periods; providing county board reporting requirements to the office of Child Nutrition; and directing the office of Child Nutrition to collect and distribute information regarding available food resources.
Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:
ARTICLE 5D. West Virginia Feed to Achieve Act.
§18-5D-6. Summer Feeding for All.
(a) The Legislature finds and declares that:
(1) The Feed to Achieve initiative has successfully improved the availability and awareness for the need to provide nutritious food to state students and the Shared Table Initiative has facilitated a spirit of innovation and consciousness in our counties to find alternative ways to feed children in need;
(2) A periodic assessment of the needs for county students and availability of county resources is necessary to determine what type of resources are available and needed to reduce food insecurity for students when they are not in school;
(3) That expansion of the Shared Table Initiative to include a program to encourage county schools to locate, participate in and initiate programs to provide meals during summers and non-school day times when some children may not have access to healthy meals could assist in reducing food insecurity for thousands of children in this state, and therefore, creating a mechanism that is not a directive from the Legislature upon county school boards, but rather an authorization to use school resources to find innovative ways, within the means of the county school systems, to assist the communities they serve, will provide a public benefit.
(b) Every county public school system shall conduct an annual countywide survey of public school students to determine their nonschool eating patterns and the availability of nutritious food to them when schools are closed. The West Virginia Office of Child Nutrition will assist and facilitate with this survey to determine the needs for supplemental food services in every county.
(c) Each county board shall also collect and compile information regarding availability of food resources in the county during nonschool days and distribute this information to all students. These resources may include any public, private, religious group, or charity that will provide food to children with food insecurity.
(d) Each county school board may investigate and implement any program that may facilitate this initiative including, but not limited to, entrepreneurships programs to foster innovation in providing assistance, utilizing participation in programs as a positive discipline option, and creating mentorship programs or other opportunities to participate in nonschool student feeding program.
(e) Each county school board shall provide, at a minimum, an annual countywide or a coordinated regional training opportunity, with assistance from the West Virginia Office of Child Nutrition, that ensures that any entity that potentially qualifies as a summer or nonschool day feeding site according to the county survey, is afforded the opportunity to receive training on operation of a feeding site.
(f) Each county board shall provide its survey, a summary of its activities, and any findings or recommendations the county school board has related thereto, to the West Virginia Office of Child Nutrition at a date determined each year by that office.
(g) The West Virginia Office of Child Nutrition shall monitor these activities and share between counties information about innovative and successful program initiatives around the state to promote and facilitate the Summer Feeding for All program.
NOTE: The purpose of this bill is to establish the Summer Feeding for All initiative that will encourage county school systems to look for innovative ways to provide assistance to students in need to access nutritious foods during summer break and other times when school is not is session; requiring each county school board to conduct an assessment of the availability of food to students to determine what food insecurities exist in the student population; directing each county school board compile and distribute a list of existing food providers in the community that will provide nutritious food to children with food insecurities on nonschool days; and directing the Office of Child Nutrition to help facilitate county school boards coordinate and develop the public policy initiative of Feed to Achieve.
Strike-throughs indicate language that would be stricken from a heading or the present law and underscoring indicates new language that would be added.