LANSING | The Lester Crawl Primary Center is one of just 12 schools in the state that recently received an Illinois School Breakfast Challenge Award.
Lansing Elementary District 158 Superintendent Cecilia Heiberger said the school earned its $5,000 award due to the successful efforts of staff to increase participation in the school's breakfast program.
"The money is going to be earmarked for continuing educating our kids on good eating habits," Heiberger said.
Assistant Principal Linda Ehlebracht said studies have shown the ability to learn is increased when students eat breakfast.
She said school personnel make an effort each day to greet the pre-kindergarten and kindergarten students and ask if they have had breakfast.
"If they have not, we direct them to the breakfast program," Ehlebracht said.
The Illinois School Breakfast Challenge is a collaboration with the Illinois State Board of Education, the Midwest Dairy Council and the Illinois No Kid Hungry Campaign.
In other Lester Crawl Elementary news, Ehlebracht said students at the school raised $1,348.21 last month for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society through the school's annual Pasta for Pennies collection.
Each student had been given a coin box to collect spare change.
Lynda Torres' morning preschool class raised the most of any class at the school and so earned a pasta party to be provided by the Olive Garden restaurant.
Ehlebracht said the school has conducted the collection for several years but this was by far the most ever raised.
"There was a lot of competition between the classrooms going on," Ehlebracht said.
She said kindergarten classes used the fundraiser as a learning opportunity by sorting the coins to practice counting money.