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ERIC Number: EJ1018717
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1559-5676
Effectiveness of Breakfast in the Classroom in Five Exemplary Districts
Rainville, Alice Jo; King, Amber D.; Nettles, Mary Frances
Journal of Child Nutrition & Management, v37 n1 Spr 2013
Purpose/Objectives: A national trend to improve school breakfast participation is the integration of breakfast within the school day. Breakfast in the classroom programs increase student access to school breakfast. Service models include "grab and go," distribution of breakfasts to each classroom, and mobile breakfast carts in hallways. The purpose of this study was to determine the effectiveness of breakfast in the classroom using financial records and student outcomes. Methods: Using case study research methodology, the National Food Service Management Institute, Applied Research Division, conducted a study to determine the effectiveness of breakfast in the classroom. State agencies recommended exemplary districts offering breakfast in the classroom programs. After a pilot visit to a USDA Midwest Region district, four districts of varying sizes in USDA's Mid-Atlantic, Northeast, Western, and Mountain Plains Regions were visited. Preparation, distribution, and service of breakfast were observed in elementary, middle, and high schools. School nutrition directors, principals, teachers, and other school personnel were interviewed. Results: Schools that offer breakfast in the classroom have experienced impressive increases in participation which leads to increased revenue. A high school that served 50 breakfasts per day increased participation to 950 breakfasts per day. A K-8 elementary school with breakfast in the classroom earned $70,412 yearly in additional revenue compared to a similar school that did not offer it ($29,813). Four of five districts had limited data on financial outcomes. A middle school that began breakfast in the classroom in 2011 experienced a drop in disciplinary referrals from 377 to 171 from 2010 to 2011. School personnel perceived improvements in the school atmosphere and a number of student-related issues following implementation of a breakfast in the classroom program. Applications to Child Nutrition Professionals: Increased breakfast participation leads to improved nutrition for children and can result in increased revenue for districts. Breakfast in the classroom can improve school culture and have a positive effect on student behavior. The outcomes of this study should be shared with school nutrition personnel, school administrators, teachers, school staff, and parents.
School Nutrition Association. 120 Waterfront Street Suite 300, National Harbor, MD 20745. Tel: 301-686-3100; Fax: 301-686-3115; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; Elementary Education; Secondary Education; Kindergarten; Grade 1; Grade 2; Grade 3; Grade 4; Grade 5; Grade 6; Grade 7; Grade 8
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A