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More students catching breakfast after the bell
social studies textbooks
School board member Don Williams reviews social studies materials being presented for the next curriculum, Monday at the District Education Center in Great Bend. Teachers presented recommendations for K-12 subject materials that will be adopted for the next seven years, pending board approval. - photo by Courtesy of Great Bend USD 428

More students are eating morning meals at Great Bend High School now that the cafeteria offers a second-chance breakfast program, which allows students to eat breakfast later in the morning, Superintendent Khris Thexton said. He shared participation numbers Monday as part of the Superintendent’s Report to the USD 428 Board of Education.

Food Services Director Kristy Alvord reports that the late breakfast is offered between first and second periods at the high school. It started in January 2019, when GBHS was one of 42 schools to receive a Breakfast Delivery Grant from the Kansas State Department of Education. Great Bend received $5,000 to boost the innovative breakfast delivery model, sometimes called breakfast after the bell, to help bring breakfast out of the cafeteria and into the classroom.

KSDE received funding for a total of $142,519 in grants from Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign and Midwest Dairy Council to support the breakfast initiative. St. John Junior-Senior High School also received $3,500.

Alvord reported that from 2018 to 2020, GBHS has seen an increase in the number of students who eat breakfast. January 2018 participation was 2,173 and January 2020 participation was 4,328, an increase of 2,155 meals served (nearly double).

Other business

• Thexton also reported on current and future building projects. Work continues on a restroom at Great Bend High School. GBHS Principal Tim Friess explains that the men’s restroom across from the Activities Office has been converted into two separate restrooms for “family use.” “Both are lockable and are gender-neutral,” he said.

The next summer building project will be replacing carpeting at the high school.

• Grants and contributions were presented and approved Monday, including gifts to the Random Acts of Kindness (RAK) Club at GBHS. This newer group of teens who find ways to be kind to others has grown quickly, Thexton said. The gifts approved were:

- Identifications Co. contributed $100 to the GBHS RAK Club.

- Charolyn Manry contributed $50 to the GBHS RAK Club designated for Teen Closet supplies.

-GBHS received $1,000 in Superfan reward incentives from the GBHS Booster Club.

- Kevin Mauler and Pollie Unruh donated $30, and Kutina Dental donated $50. Both gifts were designated for the GBHS Hall of Fame Event.

- Washington-Special Services received Box Top reward incentives in the amount of $38.30.