Fort Plain Central School District News
Providing healthy snacks to students in need,
even on the weekends
bell rings on a Friday afternoon. For many students, this is a great
feeling – the weekend lies before them and they envision all the fun
they will have. But for some students, some of our very own Fort
Plain students, they are filled with a bit of anxiety – wondering
where they will get their food when school is closed.
Many children in the Fort Plain community
count on the healthy meals provided by our school meal program. But
what happens on the weekends? This is the concern of many school
administrators and representatives from local agencies, but thanks
to a partnership between Liberty ARC and the Fort Plain Central
School District, there are a handful of students receiving
much-needed meals on the weekends.
Liberty’s “Snack Bag Program” has been feeding
hungry families in our community for 5 years now. This year, they
partnered up with the district to ensure that the snack bags are
getting directly into the hands of hungry students.
Every Wednesday, Lori Shults brings a few
members of the 7 Main Street Day Hab to Mrs. Lisa Petty’s special
education class at Fort Plain High School. Together they pack lunch
bags with healthy snacks. On Thursday, the students walk up the
hill and deliver the bags to Harry Hoag Elementary. The bags are
then distributed to students who need them.
“After our first distribution, one student
came to me on a Monday morning. She gave me a huge hug and said that
the food really helped. As a school, we have a moral responsibility
not only to teach our students academia, but also to support them
socially and emotionally. One of the things that I am most proud of
is our commitment to supporting our students not only in the
classroom, but also as citizens in our community. On behalf of the
students, I express sincere gratitude to Liberty ARC for this
partnership,” said Mrs. Crisman.
Mrs. Petty explains the benefits this program
has had on her students. “Academically, students are learning
counting and sorting, and that kind of thing. But more importantly,
they feel like they are making a difference. They are helping
someone in need and this gives them a great sense of purpose and
pride,” she said.
“It just feels good,” said seventh-grader Jose
Pipero. “Feels like we are caring for people. The people who have no
food,” he said.
“Plus, we’re having fun,” said ninth-grader
Mrs. Shults added that the Liberty residents
and the students are really forming some “neat friendships.” “It’s a
great community connection – one we will continue.”