TRENTON, NJ – Students at Nishuane School in Montclair will benefit from a NJEA Frederick L. Hipp Foundation for Excellence in Education grant. Listed among 19 grants totaling $93,130 to public school educators, Nishuane teacher Mary Paolazzi's project entitled Kitchen on a Cart: From Seed to Table has earned her statewide recognition and $9,034 for Nishuane students.

Established in 1993, the NJEA Frederick L. Hipp Foundation for Excellence in Education is dedicated to supporting projects that will enhance and improve the learning environment in our public schools. Since its creation, the Foundation has awarded nearly $2 million in support of 361 innovative educational projects that represent a bold, fresh approach by public school employees.

Paolazzi was awarded the $9,034 Hipp grant to introduce students to food preparation skills at Nishuane School in Montclair.

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She proposed that monthly cooking lessons will be led by parent volunteers Melanie Deysher and Shrin Irani utilizing the current school garden’s fresh fruits and vegetables.

The “Kitchen a la Cart,” will be purchased from Edible Education. “Kitchen a la Cart” is an existing model which has proven successful in the classroom. The cart comes with ingredients needed to prepare meals inside the classroom; an induction burner, blender, sink, cutting board, and cooking equipment.

A curriculum is included which will assist teachers in incorporating the program into their lesson plans and help volunteer parents lead their cooking lessons. Recipes used will incorporate seasonal produce from the garden and reflect the diverse student population.

This effort has gained the support of the PTA, officials announce. Teachers will assist the volunteer parents in supervising the children and there will be a first-aid kit and fire extinguisher provided in case of an emergency.

Under this program, students use the foods they grow in the school garden, thus supporting the “seed to table” component. With the grant award, the program will expand to incorporate the “compost to soil” component in an effort to bring the learning experience full circle.

A Garden Party will be held in June to celebrate the program’s success and showcase the “Kitchen on a Cart” program to the community.  

The proposal states that food from the garden will be served and students will demonstrate their basic food preparation skills. In addidtion, a possible cookbook, that includes a recipe from each class, will be printed and sold to the community to raise funds to sustain the program in future years. 

For information about the NJEA Frederick L. Hipp Foundation for Excellence in Education, please contact NJEA Communications at (609) 599‑4561 or visit the Foundation website.



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Kitchen on a Cart: From Seed to Table 

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(973) 509-4222
Montclair Education Association 


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(609) 597-9481, ext. 2220
Southern Regional Education Association 


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Hopatcong Education Association

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Montague Education Association 


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Continuation Grants


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Fairfield Education Association 


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Highland Park Education Association 

*Leonard Koch Grant for Mathematics