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Evaluation of Cooking for Kids: Culinary Training for School Nutrition Professionals on Beliefs and Practices

Evaluation of Cooking for Kids: Culinary Training for School Nutrition Professionals on Beliefs and Practices

Name:
Jennie Till

Department:
Nutritional Sciences

Abstract:
Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act 2010 made positive impacts on foods sold in school, however, many schools lack the culinary skills needed to efficiently implement updated nutrition standards. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the efficacy of Cooking for Kids, a chef-based culinary training for Oklahoma school nutrition professionals (SNP), to positively impact beliefs and transfer knowledge into practice. Participants completed a questionnaire regarding nutrition attitudes/beliefs and culinary practices on day 1 of the training and 6 months post-training. There was an increase in use of mise en place (p 0.001) and Smarter Lunchrooms practices (p 0.001). SNP reported a significant increase in the belief that the food they serve taste good (p = 0.049), belief that teachers, administration, and staff think the food taste good and is healthy (p = 0.005, p = 0.04 respectively), and belief that parents think the food taste good (p = 0.046). SNP also reported an increased belief that food they serve impacts health and academic performance of students (p = 0.001). A chef-based culinary training has potential to increase skills efficacy of SNP and increase the value of school nutrition’s role in student health by SNP and key stakeholders.