Food Education can improve health and academic outcomes for students.

Pilot Light supports effective teaching and learning in the classroom through a cohesive model for classroom education, incorporating food as a lens for traditional subjects such as Math, Reading, History, and Science.

Our Reach


Pilot Light serves 80 classrooms and over 2,250 students enrolled in 2018-19
16 Chicago schools, collectively 90% minority and 80% low-income, and predominately on the South Side.

To date, the program has reached over 4,000 students. 


“[For the NWEA Exam] Every one of my third graders was at the 90th percentile in informational text and vocabulary last year. The only thing I do in informational text is Pilot Light. Whether it’s science or social studies, all of their reading for Pilot Light is informational text and nonfiction. So not only are they being more empathetic [as a result of the program], but because they’re so into what we’re doing with Pilot Light and the things that we’re reading about with Pilot Light, their test scores last year went through the roof! That’s the only change I’ve made to how I teach.”


– 3rd Grade Teacher, Ray Elementary (Hyde Park)


“Pilot Light has had a huge impact on my class’s attendance and it is the highest it’s ever been. Food gives them something hands-on to do in the classroom. I realized that as long as they’re making or doing something with food, they’ll come to school for it.”

– 3rd Grade Teacher, Claremont Elementary (Englewood)

As a Result of the Program



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