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October 2007

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At-Risk in America
October 2007

This is the third consecutive year that the editorial team at School Nutrition magazine has used the October issue to shed more light on the “fringe” populations that exist in every American community: those who live in poverty, those who have special physical and developmental needs and those who are at extraordinary risk for “failing”—at school and at life. Can you do more to serve these kids? Find out in this month’s focus on at-risk kids.

Sometime today, four children in America will die of abuse or neglect. Between brushing your teeth in the morning and again before bed, 4,262 children in this country will have been arrested; among them, 177 will be charged with committing violent crimes, and 375 will be processed for drug abuse. Over the course of the next 24 hours, teen mothers will bear 1,186 babies. Tomorrow at school, 2,756 teens will drop out. Nearly 17,000 will be suspended. Learn about these statistics and how they impact school nutrition professionals in “At-Risk in America.”

In particular, children who are homeless are at the heart of the school nutrition program, but they often are part of an invisible demographic. They may live in every U.S. community—including yours—even if you are not aware of them. This highly mobile population needs the school district to provide for their education, but as much as that, they also need help facing many other challenges, including hunger and nutrition. Learn more in “Streetwise and on the Roam.”

Another at-risk population consists of the children of migrant workers. In an ironic twist, school nutrition professionals are finding that those who labor to bring food to the nation’s tables and cafeterias often need help to feed their own children. In fact, in 2004, Congress passed legislation that extended “categorical eligibility” for school nutrition programs to serve migrant children. As you prepare to serve this special population, gain more facts from “On the Road…Again.”

Next, get to know “Wednesday’s Child.” Forty out of a thousand teen girls gave birth in 2005 in America. Although pregnant teens face higher health risks than older mothers—and a higher risk of losing their children—they may not know the nutrition information that could prevent tragedy. You can provide nutrition, education and encouragement to give mother and child a safer, brighter future. All of these at-risk populations pose challenges to school nutrition professionals. SN magazine is with you every step of the way, as you build a better world-one child at a time.

Oct 2007 Cover

At-risk in America lock
In an era in which the U.S. government has mandated that "no child be left behind," are some children falling through the cracks?

Streetwise and on the Roam lock
Your school nutrition program is a lifeline to kids who are coping with homelessness.

On the Road... Again lock
Wondering about those who wander from one farm community to another? Learn about the children of migrant farm workers and the unique challenges they pose for school districts.

Wednesday's Child lock
Does teen pregnacy have to be a tale of woe? Find out how you can help protect, nourish and encourage mother and child.


 
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