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Farm To School

We believe all children in our community have the right to a healthy future. Our Farm to School program champions this belief through garden-based education; farmer, food producer, and local food systems professional visits to classrooms; farm field trips; and local food tastings. These activities promote healthy habits, support academic, social, and behavioral development in students, and build relationships between families and local food producers. 


Farm to School supports long-term, positive change, and we see the impact of our work daily in our interactions with students and their families.

Garden-Based Education in Tillamook County

Food Roots has been developing school gardens and garden-based learning programs in Tillamook County since 2006, and now serves over 1,400 students. We provide garden-based curricula that give students multi-sensory, hands-on lessons in science, art, seasonality, and Sense of Place while promoting family and community engagement with local producers.


Many of the schools we partner with have a garden on site where students not only learn to grow vegetables, but to practice important skills such as:  

  • Making, comparing, & communicating observations

  • Asking questions and figuring out how to find the answers

  • Taking content from the classroom and exploring it through hands-on investigations and experiments

  • Working individually and with others to better understand the world around us

  • Smiling, laughing, wondering, and getting their hands dirty


2023-2024 School Partners Include

Neah-Kah-Nie School District:

  • Garibaldi Grade School


TSD9 School District:

  • Tillamook Junior High School

  • East Elementary School

  • Liberty Elementary School


Nestucca Valley School District:

  • Nestucca K-8


Non-School District Partners:

  • Tillamook Early Learning Center

  • Head Start

Does your school want to partner? Reach out to us to inquire!

Farmer and Family Engagement

Our Farm to School program shortens the distance between eaters and growers by offering students and their families the opportunity to eat local food and meet local farmers, fishers, and other local food producers and food systems professionals. We regularly host schoolwide Tasting Tables for students to sample local food: we’ve tried everything from salad greens to purple-fleshed potatoes to raw beets to collard green rapini, and we’ve seen student preference for this produce rise over time. 


To connect students to where this produce comes from, we take field trips to local farms like Nehalem River Ranch, Alder Creek Farm, and Circe's Garden. We also bring local food producers and food systems professionals to the classroom, including Oregon Seaweed farmers from the Port of Garibaldi.


We collaborate with schools to host school-day programming as well as resources and support via Garden Parties and other family-centered community engagement activities. We invite families to spend time in their school gardens to learn more about the benefits of gardening for social and emotional well-being.


Our Farm to School
Program is supported by

  • Columbia Pacific Coordinated Care Organization

  • Oregon Department of Education

  • USDA - Farm to School

  • Ford Family Foundation

  • Spirit Mountain Community Trust

  • Tillamook County Creamery Association

  • Tillamook School District #9

  • Nestucca Valley & Neah-Kah-Nie School Districts

  • Braemer Charitable Trust

  • Tillamook Kiwanis Club

  • Nehalem Bay Garden Club

  • And many individual donors & supporters

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