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Twenty-five Illinois students have been named as semifinalists in the 2017 U.S. Presidential Scholars Program.

The program was established in 1964 to recognize and honor some of the country’s most distinguished graduating seniors. In 1979, the program was expanded to recognize students who demonstrate exceptional scholarship and talent in the visual, creative, and performing arts. In 2015, the program was expanded once more to recognize students who show ability and accomplishment in career and technica l fields. Up to 161 students annually are selected to become U.S. Presidential Scholars, one of the nation’s highest honors for high school students.

A total of 723 semifinalists has been selected from across the country. These semifinalists form the pool from which the 2017 U.S. Presidential Scholars will be chosen.

View the complete list of semifinalists.

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The Illinois Network of Charter Schools is hosting a free Spring Charter Startup Workshop on May 20 to explore how you can bring change to education in your community through the creation of a charter public school. The workshop will take place in Lake County at Prairie Crossing Charter School (1531 Jones Point R oa d, Grayslake, IL 60030) from 9:30 a.m. to noon.

Charter public schools offer an opportunity for educators and community leaders to break the mold and re-imagine school in order to provide public school options that effectively serve children's diverse learning styles, strengths , and needs.

Click here to learn more and register or email Anne with questions.

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New Child and Adult Food Care Program (CAFCP) meal pattern training tools are available from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) .

These tools can be used to t rain providers, operators, menu planners, and others in meeting the updated CACFP meal patterns that take effect Oct. 1, 2017. The tools include training worksheets and an infographic:

  • “Choose Yogurts That Are Lower in Added Sugars”
  • “Choose Breakfast Cereals That Are Lower in Added Sugars”
  • “Serving Milk in the CACFP”
  • “Growing a Healthier Future With the CACFP”

Visit the link above or ISBE’s CACFP webpage , where a link can be l ocated under the “Nutrition Information” tab along with many other program resources. CACFP is funded by the USDA and administered by ISBE. (The Illinois Department of Aging administers the adult portion of the program.)

For questions, call ISBE’s Nutrition and Wellness Programs Division at (800) 545 - 7892 or email .

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) will rebroadcast the “Unpaid Meal Charges: Local Charge Policy Requirement” webinar from 1 - 2 p.m. on Thursday, May 11. School Food Authorities (SFAs) can register online by clicking here. This webinar will include the same information as the local charge policy requirement webinar that aired on April 4. FNS is hosting a second live version of the webinar to accommodate participants that experienced technical difficulties.

Description: No later than July 1, 2017, all SFAs operating National School Lunch and/or School Breakfast Program must have a wr itten policy in place to address situations where children participating at the reduced price or paid rate do not have money to cover the cost of a meal at the time of the meal service. SFAs have discretion in developing the specifics of their policies, and FNS expects charge policies will vary based on local circumstances and available resources. This webinar will provide an overview of the local charge policy requirement and share best practices for successful policy development. Participants will have th e opportunity to submit questions during the Q&A portion of the webinar.

More Information and Resources: The requirement for SFAs to establish a local charge policy is outlined in “ SP 46 - 2016: Unpaid Meal Charges: Local Meal Charge Policies.” Other resources related to this topic may be found on USDA’s Unpaid Meal Charges webpage .

For Technical Webinar Support: Call (800) 843-9166, email , or visit . Streaming audio will be available through your computer . If you are unable to stream audio through your computer, you can call in to listen to audio via your phone at (303) 248 - 0285, Access Code: 6054013.

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