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Getting a Healthy Start at Austin Achieve Public Schools

Austin Achieve Public Schools
Austin, Texas

For some of the students attending Austin Achieve Public Schools, with more than three dozen sent home with food every week, the breakfast, lunch, and dinner they enjoy at school may be their only access to healthy, balanced meals.

In 2018, Austin Achieve Public Schools opened an elementary school for students in kindergarten through fourth grade. Seeking ways to get its littlest learners excited about eating breakfast and provide them with as many opportunities as possible to start the day right, Austin Achieve Public Schools applied for a school breakfast grant from Action for Healthy Kids.

“Food service team members manage breakfast carts in hallways, so kids walking to class can pick up breakfast from the carts and eat in their advisory class. Even if the school day has started, they can still eat their breakfast. Even if they get there late, they still have access to food,” explains Emily Morrison, Chief Advancement Officer, Austin Achieve Public Schools, noting that breakfast continues to be the most important meal of the day, especially for growing minds and bodies. “If an elementary school student can eat during advisory, he or she does better throughout the day and we have fewer disciplinary issues.”

Thanks to funding from Action for Healthy Kids, all three Austin Achieve Public Schools—elementary, middle, and high—now utilize not only service lines but also grab-and-go breakfast carts to distribute food to their students. This has resulted in 90% more students eating breakfast on a daily basis and 40% fewer students visiting the front office due to hunger.

This grant was made possible by funding from the Walmart Foundation.