As a school-based program, Emeril’s Culinary Garden & Teaching Kitchen is implemented in elementary and middle schools around the U.S, with a preference for schools serving middle to low income students from rural, suburban and urban areas. 

Schools selected to become education partners are evaluated on several attributes to determine their ability to adopt and scale the program over time. 


Current School Partners:

Belle Chasse Academy Belle Chasse, LA

Belle Chasse Academy (BCA) is a pre-K through eighth grade public charter school serving over 900 military dependent children from the five parishes of Greater New Orleans. Emeril’s Culinary Garden & Teaching Kitchen at BCA will allow the school to expand its current gardening program, renovate the existing culinary classroom, complete its hydroponic lettuce system, develop the school’s vegetable production garden, and build an outdoor culinary learning center that will serve as the heart of the school’s infrastructure.


Cunningham Elementary School Austin, TX

Cunningham Elementary School is a pre-K through fifth grade public charter school within Austin Independent School District serving over 400 students with diverse backgrounds. Emeril’s Culinary Garden & Teaching Kitchen at Cunningham Elementary will allow the school to enhance its current gardening program and renovate one of the school’s existing classrooms into a 1,500-square-foot teaching kitchen. In this space, students’ imaginations and minds will be activated when they interact with the food they have grown using the program’s curriculum which features more than 100 of Chef Emeril’s recipes modified for the classroom


DC Bilingual Public Charter School, Washington DC

DC Bilingual Public Charter School offers an innovative, dual immersion, Spanish and English learning program for all students, regardless of their home language. Through its rigorous academic curriculum; comprehensive arts, food and wellness, and family engagement programs; and celebration of diverse cultures, DC Bilingual students learn the skills and values they need to become influential members of their community. As ranked by the DC Public Charter School Board (DC PCSB), DC Bilingual is a Tier 1 school serving 453 pre-K through grade 5 students. At the core of DC Bilingual ’s school culture is an emphasis on the value of learning within a diverse community. Sixty-one percent (61%) of DC Bilingual students are Latino, 20% are African American, and 15% are white. The majority of its students (63%) qualify for free or reduced-price lunch, and 14% receive special education services. Diversity creates an environment where students learn from one another, learn to respect each other, and develop the skills and habits to excel in a diverse world. In partnership with the Emeril Lagasse Foundation, DC Bilingual seeks to grow its student leaders to address societal injustices through food and environmental stewardship; build its community’s understanding and empathy for the environment and how it connects to the food that we eat; further opportunities for community members to explore new flavors and relate to each other through the language of food; and elevate the importance of food and well-being toward the academic, social, and emotional growth of its students local and nationally. 


Starlight Elementary School, Watsonville, CA

Starlight Elementary School in Watsonville, California serves 600 students in a late-exit bilingual model from Transitional Kindergarten to 5th grade in Pajaro Valley Unified School District (PVUSD). Agriculture and related industries comprise the heart of our local economy with globally renowned companies such as Martinelli’s, Driscoll’s and Lakeside Organic Gardens calling Watsonville home. In fact, many of our students are the children of farmworkers who grow, harvest and package the food that feeds our region, the nation and the world. Honoring the work of our families and community through Emeril’s Culinary Garden and Teaching Kitchen (CGTK) will be transformative for all involved as we expand the well-established garden and cooking education program at Starlight. The CGTK program will make powerful cultural connections for our students to their home lives, family backgrounds and life experiences allowing us to identify strengths and assets within each student as we nurture them along their educational journeys. PVUSD’s Superintendent of Schools, Dr. Michelle Rodriguez, and Starlight Elementary Principal, Jaclynne Medina, support innovative programs that engage the whole child in hands-on learning that focuses on their academic and social emotional needs. The CGTK program and accompanying in-depth curriculum folds well into the vision of supporting students to reach their full educational potential. This immersive learning in the culinary garden and teaching kitchen will also prepare Starlight students for future success in agriculture and culinary Career Technical Education coursework in PVUSD middle and high schools.

Dr. John Ochsner Discovery Health Sciences Academy, New Orleans, LA

Dr. John Ochsner Discovery Health Sciences Academy (DJOD) is a pre-K through eighth grade public charter school serving Jefferson Parish in Greater New Orleans. DJOD provides students with a high-quality education that empowers students to make healthy and sustainable choices for themselves and their environment. Emeril’s Culinary Garden & Teaching Kitchen at DJOD will expand on its program to provide hands-on learning in a newly constructed teaching kitchen and outdoor culinary classroom and vegetable garden. Students will enjoy experiential learning through the program’s culinary curriculum and maintaining a vegetable garden.



Who is our ideal school partner?

  • 500 – 700 students in size
  • Grades Kindergarten – 8th
  • Existing operational school garden with on-site space to construct a teaching kitchen.
  • At least 12 months of experience with experiential teaching practices.
  • Dedicated development staff member or committee with proven fundraising capabilities.

How to Apply

Applicant must be a 501c3 K-8 public, private or charter school. Consideration will also be given to a school foundation applying on behalf of a non-profit K-8 public, private or charter school if the foundation exists solely to benefit and support the named school on the application.

Interested Schools should submit a letter of interest to Emeril Lagasse Foundation demonstrating its willingness and ability to implement Emeril’s Culinary Garden & Teaching Kitchen. Upon consideration, the foundation will contact qualified schools with further application instructions. Unsolicited applications will not be accepted.

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