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NCSS earns sixth consecutive Golden Radish Award
golden radish award
Photo ID (L-R): GA Dept. of Public Health Commissioner and State Health Officer Kathleen E. Toomey, UGA Director of Extension County Operations Michael J. Martin, NCSS Nutrition Director Abdul Lindsay, Commissioner of the GA Dept. of Early Care and Learning Amy Jacobs and Georgia Organics Board Chairman Joe Reynolds. - photo by Submitted Photo
COVINGTON, Ga. - For the sixth consecutive year, Newton County School System has earned the Golden Radish Award, a prestigious statewide farm-to-school distinction, which acknowledges the outstanding leadership of school representatives building comprehensive farm-to-school programs. 

The award was presented to Abdul Lindsay, director of School Nutrition for Newton County Schools, at a special ceremony cohosted by Georgia Organics at Mercedes Benz Stadium on Tuesday, Sept. 17. 

Ninety Georgia school systems received recognition for their involvement in farm-to-school programming. 

The Golden Radish Awards recognizes school districts incorporating farm-to-school principles into their school curriculums. Georgia Organics, UGA Cooperative Extension, and the Georgia Departments of Education, Agriculture, Public Health and the Department of Early Care and Learning host the ceremony.

Districts were recognized at five levels - Platinum, Gold, Silver, Bronze and Honorary recognition. 

A selection committee determines award levels based upon a point system, with schools with high involvement in farm-to-school receiving the highest levels of recognition. Honorary Radishes are awarded to programs that are just getting started and satisfy at least one criterion within the Bronze-level or higher. School districts that satisfy the Gold-level for all ten criteria are awarded a Platinum Radish. 

Newton County received the Gold-level recognition.

“Our school system’s involvement with the farm-to-school movement goes beyond serving locally grown fruits and vegetables, it’s also about facilitating agricultural-based learning,” Lindsay said. “We also have a strong relationship with our local Farm Bureau to help ensure that students make the connection between sustainable environments, nutritious foods offered in our cafés, the whole child including their well-being and learning.”

“Congratulations to our school nutrition team,” NCSS Superintendent Samantha Fuhrey said. “I am proud of their hard work and effort to ensure our students enjoy locally grown fruits and vegetables while learning the importance of healthy food options!”