Farm to School Grant Program

The Farm to School program exists in order to assist eligible entities, through grants and technical assistance, in implementing farm to school programs that improve access to local foods in eligible schools.

The program has four tracks: planning, implementation, training and support service.

?Planning
grants are for schools or school districts just getting started on farm to school activities and are intended to help these entities organize and structure their efforts for maximum impact by embedding known best practices into early design considerations.

?Implementation grants are intended to help schools or school districts scale or further develop existing farm to school initiatives.

?Support Service grants are intended for state and local agencies, Indian tribal organizations, agricultural producers or groups of agricultural producers, and non-profit entities working with schools or school districts to further develop and provide broad reaching support services to farm to school initiatives.

Training grants are intended for state and local agencies, Indian tribal organizations, and non-profit entities to support trainings that strengthen farm to school supply chains, or trainings that provide technical assistance in the area of local procurement, food safety, culinary education, and/or integration of agriculture-based curriculum.

Examples of projects include: aggregating local food supply to more effectively meet the needs of school districts; testing products or conducting school food market feasibility analyses; developing new local food products or formulations to meet the needs of schools; improving infrastructure to accommodate new ingredients or menu items; forming statewide or regional networks or coalitions of varying kinds; and more.
Examples of Funded Projects

Fiscal Year 2016: 1.

Support Service grants are intended for eligible entities working with schools or school districts to further develop and provide broad reaching support services to farm to school initiatives. 2.

Implementation grants are intended to help schools or school districts scale or further develop existing farm to school initiatives. 3.

Planning grants are for schools or school districts just getting started on farm to school activities and are intended to help these entities organize and structure their efforts for maximum impact by embedding known best practices into early design considerations. 4.

Training grants are intended for eligible entities to support trainings that strengthen farm to school supply chains, or trainings that provide technical assistance in the area of local procurement, food safety, culinary education, and/or integration of agriculture‐based curriculum.

Fiscal Year 2017: 1.

Support Service grants are intended for eligible entities working with schools or school districts to further develop and provide broad reaching support services to farm to school initiatives. 2.

Implementation grants are intended to help schools or school districts scale or further develop existing farm to school initiatives. 3.

Planning grants are for schools or school districts just getting started on farm to school activities and are intended to help these entities organize and structure their efforts for maximum impact by embedding known best practices into early design considerations. 4.

Training grants are intended for eligible entities to support trainings that strengthen farm to school supply chains, or trainings that provide technical assistance in the area of local procurement, food safety, culinary education, and/or integration of agriculture‐based curriculum.

Fiscal Year 2018: FY 2018: Planning - $1.5 million; Implementation - $3.0 million; Training - $.5 million.


Agency - Department of Agriculture

Established in 1862, the Department of Agriculture serves all Americans through anti-hunger efforts, stewardship of nearly 200 million acres of national forest and rangelands, and through product safety and conservation efforts. The USDA opens markets for American farmers and ranchers and provides food for needy people around the world.




Selected Recipients for this Program


RecipientAmount Start DateEnd Date
Schenectady City School District $ 50,000   2019-07-222022-06-30
Healthy Schools Ok, Inc $ 100,000   2019-07-222021-06-30
Klamath County School District $ 96,538   2019-07-222021-06-30
Thompson Public Schools $ 81,848   2019-07-222021-06-30
Green City Growers $ 100,000   2019-07-222021-06-30
Reconnecting Mcdowell, Inc. $ 96,842   2019-08-202021-06-30
School District No. 1 In The City And County Of Denver And The State Of Colorado $ 100,000   2019-07-222021-06-30
South Shore Young Men's Christian Association $ 92,778   2019-07-222021-06-30
Big Green $ 100,000   2019-07-222021-06-30
Adams County /ohio Valley School District $ 45,645   2019-07-222021-06-30



Program Accomplishments

Fiscal Year 2016: FY 2016: Planning - $.8 million; Implementation - $1.5 million; Support service - $2.0 million; Training - $.5 million. Fiscal Year 2017: FY 2016: Planning - $1 million; Implementation - $1.2 million; Support service - $2.2 million; Training - $.5 million. Fiscal Year 2018: FY 2018: Planning - $1.5 million; Implementation - $3.0 million; Training - $.5 million.

Uses and Use Restrictions

Assistance in improving access to local foods in eligible schools can take the form of: (i) Training; ii) Supporting operations; (iii) Planning; (iv) Purchasing equipment; (v) Developing school gardens; (vi) Developing partnerships; and (vii) Implementing farm to school programs.

No more than 10 percent of the grant funds may be used for food purchases in the grant budget.

Food purchases are limited to food for educational or development purposes, such as taste tests or the development of new recipes.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

Assistance will be used to increase the availability of local foods in schools.

Beneficiary Eligibility

Eligible entities, and therefore beneficiaries, include schools, Indian Tribal Organizations, non profit organizations, schools, producer and producer groups and State and local agencies.

Credentials/Documentation

Non profit organizations will be required to submit proof of 501(c) 3 non profit status. 2 CFR 200, Subpart E - Cost Principles applies to this program.

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

Preapplication coordination is not applicable.

Environmental impact information is not required for this program.

This program is excluded from coverage under E.O.

12372.

Application Procedures

2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards applies to this program. Not applicable.

Award Procedures

All applications that are submitted by the published deadline will be screened for completeness and conformity to the requirements as announced in the RFA package. Grants are awarded by a competitive process via a review panel composed of trained external, FNS and other Federal staff that will determine the technical merit of each grant application, provide a numerical score, and make recommendations to selecting officials. FoodCorps grants are awarded through a cooperative agreement.

Deadlines

Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.

Authorization

The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 (HHFKA) amended Section 18 of the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act (NSLA) to establish a Farm to School program in order to assist eligible entities, through grants and technical assistance, in implementing farm to school programs that improve access to local foods in eligible schools. , Section 243. , Section 243.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

From 30 to 60 days. There is presently no other approval information.

Appeals

From 30 to 60 days. Applicants can submit appeals directly to the Grant Officer using the contact information provided in the request for application.

Renewals

There is no additional renewals information at this time.

Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

Statutory formulas are not applicable to this program. Matching Requirements: Percent: 25%. The applicant must provide at least 25 percent of the costs of the grant project as the federal share of costs for this grant cannot exceed 75 percent of the total cost of the project. This program does not have MOE requirements. No additional information is available at this time.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

Training grants will be awarded for a one year time period, with an expected start date at/or near June 1, 2017. Planning grants will be awarded for an 18 month period, with an expected start date at/or near June 1, 2017. Implementation and support service grants will be awarded for up to a two year time period, with an expected start date at/or near June 1, 2017. Method of awarding/releasing assistance: by letter of credit. Method of awarding/releasing assistance: by letter of credit.

Post Assistance Requirements

Reports

No program reports are required.

No cash reports are required.

Grant recipients are responsible for managing and monitoring the progress of the grant project activities and performance.

All grant types will submit progress reports on a quarterly basis throughout the grant term and a final report 90 days after the close of the project period.

The award document will indicate the reporting format and schedule for submitting project performance/progress reports to FNS.

Grant recipients are responsible for managing and monitoring the financial status of the grant project.

All grant types will submit financial reports on a quarterly basis throughout the grant term and a final report 90 days after the close of the project period.

The award document will indicate the reporting format and schedule for submitting project performance/progress reports to FNS.

As a condition of receiving a grant, grant recipients shall agree to cooperate in an evaluation of the program carried out using grant funds.

Upon selection of grant awardees, USDA will provide further guidance and direction regarding evaluation protocols and common indicators.

Applicants should expect that evaluation protocols will include both process evaluations (qualitative and quantitative indicators of progress toward the objectives, accomplishment of activities) and outcome evaluations (to determine whether the objectives were met and what impact they had).

Audits

In accordance with the provisions of 2 CFR 200, Subpart F - Audit Requirements, non-Federal entities that expend financial assistance of $750,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-Federal entities that expend less than $750,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in 2 CFR 200.503. The single Audit process and compliance supplement.

Records

The grantee must maintain records in accordance with the grant agreement. Such records must be retained for a period of three years after the date of submission of the final report for the fiscal year to which the records pertain.

Financial Information

Account Identification

12-3539-0-1-605.

Obigations

(Salaries) FY 16 $4,887,067; FY 17 est $5,000,000; and FY 18 est $5,000,000 - This obligation represents the planning, implementation and support service grants. FY 2013: Planning - $1.3 million; Implementation - $1.2 million; Support service - $2.3 million; Food Corps - $1.5 million FY 2014: Planning - $1.2 million; Implementation - $1.4 million; Support service - $2.5 million; Food Corps - $3.5 FY 2015: Planning - $.7 million; Implementation - $1.4 million; Support service - $2.4 million FY 2016: Planning - $.8 million; Implementation - $1.2 million; Support service - $2 million; Training - $.5 million FY 2017: Planning - $.5 million; Implementation - $1.7 million; Support service - $2.6 million; Training - $.1 million. (Cooperative Agreements) FY 16 $1,000,000; FY 17 est $0; and FY 18 est $5,000,000 - This obligation represents the Americorp (Foodcorp) Cooperative Agreement.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

Planning grants will range from $35,000 - $50,000 while Implementation and support service grants will range from $65,000 - $100,000. Training grants range $15,000 - 50,000. The Foodcorp cooperative agreement is for $500,000 or two years (FY-2014 and FY-2015).

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

Not Applicable.

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office

None.

Headquarters Office

Mieka Sanderson 3101 Park Center Drive, Alexandria, Virginia 22302 Email: mieka.sanderson@fns.usda.gov Phone: 7033052163

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

Criteria for selecting proposals is detailed in the RFA and includes degree to which the project serves a school or school district with a high percentage of free and reduced price meal enrollment; need, readiness and likelihood of sucess; alignment with farm to school program goals; project design and management; sustainability and transferability; and appropriateness of budget plan.



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