Farm to School Profile: Overton Public Schools

School Name: Overton School

School Address:  401 7th St, Overton, NE 68863

Who is on your school’s internal Farm to School team?  Food Service Director, Science teacher, Shop teacher/FFA Advisor, and the Superintendent.

Number of Students:  293

How many schools are in your district? 1 - pre-K through 12

Size of cafeteria staff:  5 (3 work in the summer)
# Full-Time Staff 0
# Part-Time Staff 5

Equipment available to you in your kitchen(s):  Commercial coolers, freezers, ovens, sunkist slicer, juicer, knives, and slicer.

Does your cafeteria offer a salad bar?  Yes

Please list programs you participate in:  National School Lunch Program, Breakfast program, and Summer Feeding Program.  We used to qualify for the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program, however we no longer qualify, so our school board funds the program so we can continue giving the students the snacks.

Name of farm or business used for local purchases:  Our Little Farm owned by Ben & Judy Weston near Lexington, NE

Items/Foods regularly purchased:  tomatoes, melons, squash, beets and watermelon

What Farm to School activities does your school participate in?  We have done sampling/taste tests, taken students on farm tours and classroom education.

Is your school involved in growing food for the cafeteria?  Not yet.

Does your school have a garden or greenhouse used for Farm to School activities?  No, but we’re planning for both a garden and greenhouse.  

Share your biggest Farm to School success:  Working with the Westons and the continuation of the fruit and veggie program by the school board.

Share your biggest Farm to School challenge:  Teacher buy-in for classroom education and finding more farmers to work with our school. Another challenge Overton faced and overcame was featured in this article here: When Supply Exceeds Purchasing Power.

Share your school’s best tip for fresh food procurement, processing and/or storage:  Our best tip is to provide clear specifications on what we need and want to buy to the farmer so that best know how to meet our needs.

Other information you’d like to share:
This is our team building year with a new Family Consumer Sciences teacher, an FFA chapter that is organizing, and a very “gung-ho” Science teacher.  We have many plans for the future of farm to school in Overton.  Our plans include starting a school garden and a greenhouse this year.  Our Food Service Director is also taking advantage of some opportunities such as Produce University and Team Nutrition, which will bring additional knowledge to our staff.