Origins

In 2005 a group of concerned public school parents, led by Nancy Easton, united around the conviction that healthier bodies make healthier minds and that, conversely, unhealthy school environments interfere with student health, school attendance and academic achievement. And WITS was born.

We began in 2005, in one New York City classroom at the Ella Baker School (NYC PS 225). We grew each year to serve more and more children. In partnership with school districts, our programs have reached more than 95,000 students in over 190 schools. In the past eighteen years, we have cooked over 11 million school meals and led more than 85,000 hours of play. We are continuing to expand our national footprint, helping schools across the country become healthier places for students to learn and grow. As such, in 2022, we announced the launch of Chefs in the Schools and NYC’s first-ever Chef Council, a menu development and chef training program that will reach all NYC public schools, in collaboration with the Mayor’s Office, the Mayor’s Office of Food Policy, and the Office of Food and Nutrition Services. In parallel, in 2023, we announced the launch of Coach for Good and NYC’s first-ever Coach Council, a fitness program piloting in NYC public schools, in collaboration with Exos and the NYC Public Schools Office of School Wellness Programs. The program aims to increase physical activity throughout the school day and provide professional development opportunities for all NYC Physical Education teachers via Coach Council Summits.