"The goal is not to try to make kids eat food that they won’t like but to make things they already like healthier, and to instill an interest in cooking fresh, healthy food that carries over to the way the children eat at home."
"The daily victories are certainly worth noting. Like the child devouring kale after never seeing it prior to our labs. Or the child coming up to a WITS chef and telling her that he lost ten pounds over the year because she taught him how to eat healthfully. Or the skeptical “lunch lady” telling us she will never serve chicken fingers again after working with us and learning what’s best for kids."
""We got into a lot of high poverty schools and areas where there are food deserts, not a lot of fresh food available, and we give them lessons, life lessons of what healthy eating is, and that's what it's about," says Telepan."
"Bill has dived headlong into the belly of the bureaucratic beast, leaving his restaurant stoves to meet with school lunch officials, develop recipes and literally work the lunch line in the cafeteria, all in an effort to improve the meals New York City feeds to over 850,000 students a day."
"The New York City-based WITS program for the past 12 years has been committed to increasing access to healthier food through school lunches where, says Executive Director Nancy Easton, “chicken fingers and processed food have become the norm.” "
"There’s data that speaks to the program’s success, too. After two years, schools with WITS saw a 39 percent increase in fruits and vegetables being eaten at lunch and a 62 percent increase of pro-social behavior at recess. Data also shows that kids get on task much quicker after lunch and recess with the healthy changes."
"It's one of the best organizations in America, and here in New York they're in 100 schools. They're helping to develop a great menu, made with vegetables, fruit, at the same dollar amount as the regular menu. So yes, we can feed our children better."
"I knew I had to do something. I knew it was time to dive in."
WITS can be life-changing for a student who isn't exposed to these ingredients or this type of nutrition and wellness education. By exposing a student to nutritious and better quality food, we can have a lifelong impact.Eric Goldstein, CEO, The Office of School Support Services, NYC Department of Education
With varied programming that provides nutritional education to NYC's students, WITS brings important resources where they are needed most.Kirsten Gillibrand, US Senate, New York
The way we eat in this country has to change for everyone. For that to happen, it has to start at a young age. Wellness in the Schools is pioneering that change.Nick Marsh, CEO, Chop't Creative Salad Company and WITS Chef Partner
- USDA Blog: A Case Study in Wellness at PS 145- Supporting Schools and Supporting Nutrition Standards
- Wall Street Journal: Upscale Dining in School Cafeterias
- Fox 5: Food and Kids
- The Atlantic: How to Cook a Real Chicken Nugget (and why)
- JWM Magazine: Dynamic Duos, Bill Telepan and Nancy Easton
- American Way: Food for Thought
- Food Management: Chefs Empower Schools and Students to Improve Food