NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ—Students at Redshaw Elementary School collected over 2,000 pounds for Middlesex County's annual Spring School Food Drive.
Out of the 131 area schools that participated in the food drive, Redshaw Elementary came in third place with 2,050 pounds of food and supplies.
"It was a great effort by these students, staff, parents and communities, and we can't thank them enough," said Jennifer Apostal, project manager for the Middlesex County Improvement Authority, which operates the food drive.
"These contributions see us through the summer months when donations fall off."
On May 7, the Middlesex County Board of Freeholders echoed those sentiments in a presentation honoring the top schools in the food drive, which was a project of the Middlesex County Improvement Authority (MCIA).
The Middlesex County Emergency Food Network noted that students at Redshaw were able to gather the 2,050 pounds of food through the use of flyers, encouragement by their school principal and daily announcements.
In first place was Colonia High School in Woodbridge, which raised over 5,000 pounds of food, followed by the Edison-based Middlesex County Academy for Sciences, Math and Technology, which raised roughly 4,000 pounds.
Two other schools in New Brunswick also made the top 15 list in the food drive.
Having gathered 1,700 pounds of food, the Paul Robeson Elementary came in fifth place in the county, while Roosevelt Elementary gathered 1,250 pounds of food, good for eleventh place.
In total, those three New Brunswick schools gathered 7,050 pounds of food alone.
By the time the month-long food drive ended on March 27, nearly 42 tons of food, or 84,000 pounds, were collected by the participating schools.
Apostal noted that the food drive generated 10 tons less than last year's drive, attributing it to a "rash of bad weather," and "the recent extension of standardized testing times."
"Snow days and PARCC testing may have contributed to the shortfalls of this year's drive." Apostal said.
"We can only hope to make up for our shortfall with these smaller drives, which are often hosted by community groups and businesses."