CAMDEN (CBS)– New Jersey Governor Chris Christie along with Camden Mayor Dana Redd and Superintendent of Schools Paymon Rouhanifard announced a new program that will help Camden students and their families.
The After School Dinner Program, in partnership with ARAMARK, is now being offered to students in six participating schools in the Camden district: Dudley Elementary, Octavius V. Catto School, HB Wilson Elementary, Hutch Family School, U.S. Wiggins School and Camden High School.
Christie says, “In Camden, we are beginning to see real progress on education issues from creating safety corridors to tackling the problem of high-school drop-outs. This new After School Dinner Pilot Program is another innovative way to ensure children have an opportunity for a nourishing meal, which is a critical element to improving student performance and achievement.”
The new program currently has 75-125 students participating each day at the six schools.
Meals are pre-packed prior to serving and consist of hot food items. The only things students have to select are fruit and milk. The service begins at 3:30 p.m. and ends by 4:00 p.m.
Mayor Redd adds, “The After School Dinner Pilot Program is a great initiative that will truly help many of our Camden families who are working hard to provide basic necessities for their children. I am confident that the success of the pilot program will eventually allow us to extend it citywide. I thank the Governor and Superintendent for their continued commitment and support to our Camden children and families.”
Christie said at a press conference on Thursday, “It is about our commitment to the children and their families. The families are just as important.”
Superintendent Rouhanifard concludes, “We are thrilled to be able to offer this new pilot program to our students. There is no doubt that nutrition is critically important to the health and success of our students.”