Today at 9 a.m., Blackburn Laboratory Middle School had a program to celebrate its new culinary program called “Creativity Kitchen”. Celebrity Chef, Nick Wallace, who is a product of Jackson Public School spearheaded “Creativity Kitchen” in which every Monday, middle school students will get the opportunity to eat from a menu that Chef Wallace creates.
The kick off event was held at Blackburn Middle School because Chef Nick Wallace graduated from Blackburn Middle School and is a product of the West Jackson community. He went to Isabelle Elementary and eventually graduated from Jim Hill High School. During the program he praised Jackson Public Schools, and his mother, for his success.
Chef Wallace wanted to encourage students and he told a story of when he was invited to the food service awards ceremony in 2015. He informed the students on how the ceremony inspired him to give back, and create a partnership with JPS.
With “Creativity Kitchen” Chef Wallace wants the students to learn the nutritional value of gardening and growing fresh fruits, and vegetables. On Febuary 1st, the first menu will be available to students at Blackburn and Powell Middle School. The menu will feature industrial pizza, peas & carrots, roasted potatoes, and pizza salad. By the end of the school year, every middle school will have Chef Wallace’s menu to choose from on Mondays.
Chef Wallace wanted to inspire healthy eating, and promote the importance growing food naturally. He also wanted to promote socially responsible and environmentally conscious attitudes in the students.
In attendance were Mayor Tony Yarber, Dr. Cedrick Gray, Superintendent, Ms. Beneta Burt, School Board President, Ms. Chinelo Evans, Chief Academic Officer of Middle school, Ms. Scott Clement, Director of healthy school and child Nutrition, Mississippi Department of Education.
All of the speakers talked about partnership, shaping, and connecting our children with understanding the healthier lifestyles and healthier eating habits. The newly installed Blackburn garden was looked upon as a model of how school gardens can transform the lives of students, teachers, and the environment of their community.
Below are a few pictures from the kick off event.