COVID-19 and school food

The impact of the early stages of the coronavirus pandemic on student nutrition programs in Ontario

Keywords: School Nutrition Programs, Student Nutrition Programs, COVID-19, Pandemic, Qualitative Research, Food Security

Abstract

This paper is an exploration of the impact of the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic on emer­gency food supply to school-aged children in Ontario, Canada. Using surveys in the framework of a bounded qualitative case study, we investigate how Student Nutrition Program (SNP) support staff have responded to the changed circumstances of the pandemic. Results indicate that program support staff were able to shift the SNP’s focus from universal access in-school nutrition programs to targeted food security initiatives for families. This shift was possible due to the complex web of relationships within which SNPs in Ontario oper­ate. Additional data and findings are discussed in the article, relating to the prepandemic operation of SNPs, how programs have been affected, and the concerns of SNP support staff about future issues as the programs restart in the new school year under pandemic conditions.

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Author Biographies

Indra Noyes, University of Waterloo

Ph.D. candidate, Balsillie School of International Affairs

Nicola Lyle, Peterborough Child and Family Centres

Director of Administrative Services

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Published
2021-04-06
How to Cite
Noyes, I., & Lyle, N. (2021). COVID-19 and school food: The impact of the early stages of the coronavirus pandemic on student nutrition programs in Ontario. Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development, 10(2), 197–210. https://doi.org/10.5304/jafscd.2021.102.049
Section
Papers on the Impact of COVID-19 on the Food System