The Daily Feed: Winning Students Cook on Capitol Hill—and Call for Reform

Those calling for school food reform have traditionally included concerned, often vocal, parents. Now you can add one more group to the growing list of advocates: students themselves.

Today on Capitol Hill, Lashonda Livingston, Cari Smith, Henry Walton, Jakaia Frankin and Aljibri Reed from Chicago’s Tilden Career Community High School prepared the winning meal they designed for Cooking up Change, a contest run by the nonprofit Healthy Schools Campaign. The annual cooking competition raises awareness of the need for school food reform. This year’s event also highlights efforts to strengthen the Child Nutrition Act, which is up for reauthorization.

The Chicago students served their winning menu of chicken and vegetable jambalaya, jalapeno cornbread, and tomato-cucumber salad at the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center. Legislators at the Longworth House of Representatives cafeteria dined on the same lunch today as well.

Cooking up Change has also announced an expansion of its design-a-school-lunch contest to students nationwide. Find details here. Finalists will travel to the Farm to Cafeteria conference for a cook-off this May.

Up tomorrow: my Q &A with Christie Vilsack, honorary co-chair of Cooking up Change and wife of Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack.


Cheryl Sternman Rule is a widely-published food writer and the voice behind the blog 5 Second Rule.


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