Monday, February 28, 2022

March is National Nutrition Month!

Spring is just around the corner (thank goodness), which means it's time to start planning your National Nutrition Month celebrations!

Each March, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics highlights building healthy habits by celebrating National Nutrition Month.  This year's theme, "Celebrate a World of Flavors," encourages us to step outside of the box and add some flair to our menus.  The trend to add global flavors has taken off in the past few years and is now more in demand than ever before.  International cuisine is popping up everywhere, even here in Iowa, and your students are craving it! 

As you plan your menus and events for National Nutrition Month, don't let the thought of international foods intimidate you! Try out some of these simple "world-cuisine scene" recipes:
For more information, logo requests, media toolkits, handouts, games, and more, check out the NNM Homepage from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.  For NNM promotional materials, t-shirts, decorations, and more visit the Jim Coleman store

From all of us at AEA Purchasing, bon appetit, Buon appetito, and chow down!

Monday, February 21, 2022

February Highlights from AEA Purchasing

Check out what's happening with AEA Purchasing and our fabulous vendor partners this month:

+22-23 Food Program Agreements
Cooperative Purchasing Agreements for the fiscal year 2023 will be shared with all current AEA Purchasing Food participants (via email) on Friday, February 25. If your district is interested in completing this agreement electronically, please email administrative assistant Barb Adams at We continue to encourage new involvement and ask that any Child Nutrition Program participant interested in joining our co-op please reach out to our office directly.  To be effective beginning July 1, 2022, the agreement must be signed no later than June 30, 2022.  

AEA Purchasing prime vendors for the fiscal year 2023 are Martin Bros. Distributing Company, Inc. (Cedar Falls, Iowa) for both east and west zones for food supply and west zone for ware wash supply and service, EMS Detergent Services (North Liberty, IA) for east zone ware wash supply and service, and Rapids Wholesale (Marion, IA) for small wares supply.

+Rapids Wholesale Spring Promo
Rapids is offering a promo that is sure to warm your spirits during these cold days of winter! AEA Purchasing is excited to announce the newest promotion that Rapids Wholesale (your small wares awarded prime vendor) is offering members: no minimum cart fee to receive free shipping from February thru June 2022.

+IASL Award Book Buy
Order forms are now available for the 22-23 IASL award book sets! Discounts on the awarded sets are available through AEA Purchasing and Perfection Learning. Click here to access the order form. Place your order before March 31 and receive a FREE book poster! For additional details, contact Laurie OR your local AEA media contact.

+Vendor Promotions
Want to know more about our vendor partners and what they have available? Check out this month's Vendor Promotions folder! Special offers, flyers, and brochures are added daily.

+Social Media
Follow us on social media to see what we are up to! You can find us on Twitter and Facebook!

Have You Checked Out Our Marketplace?

Ordering doesn't have to be difficult! That's why AEA Purchasing Marketplace was created. It's an online ordering, single sign-on purchase, and quoting platform built with you, the end-user, in mind.

AEA Purchasing Marketplace offers:
  • Free-to-use online marketplace
  • Quick access to multiple vendors
  • No need for multiple usernames and passwords
  • All pricing is contract discounted pricing
  • Compare products and pricing at a quick glance
  • Flexible payment options
  • Pay via purchase order (PO), credit card or P-card

Monday, February 14, 2022

Take Off With School Breakfast

Start planning now! Mark your calendar for National School Breakfast Week, March 7-11. This year's theme, "Take Off with School Breakfast," can be used in a few different ways. Focus on "taking off"  with grab-and-go items, or try a take-off/blast-off theme. Use your imagination -- there is NO limit! Check out general information, marketing tools, handouts, logo/artwork requests, and much more on the School Nutrition website here.

Here are some great ideas for celebrating: 

1.  Advertise National School Breakfast Week on your social media outlets, as well as menu boards, morning announcements, and parent newsletters:

  • Educate parents on the National School Breakfast Program (requirements, offerings, etc.) 
  • Incorporate information on the importance of eating breakfast. Check out these articles: 

5 Reasons Your Teen Needs Breakfast and Benefits of School Breakfast

  • Talk about the breakfast choices you offer (menu vs ala carte)
  • Remind parents and students that breakfast is FREE
  • Run a social media contest with your high schoolers! Students share a selfie with their breakfast for a chance to win a prize.
2.  Ask students what they would like to see more of at breakfast. Set up a survey station in the lunchroom or send out a google form.  

3.  Taste test breakfast items with your students at lunchtime. Kids who do not typically eat breakfast at school might find something they like and decide to join you in the mornings. 

4.  Breakfast doesn't always have to be served in the morning. Try serving breakfast for lunch.  

5.  Incorporate something new. Here are a few cool ideas: 

Not an AEA Purchasing Cooperative Food Member?  We would love the opportunity to talk! Email

Tuesday, February 8, 2022

Thinking About a Summer Tech Project? Start Planning Now!

AEA Purchasing has several contracts with quality partners providing the latest and greatest in all things ed-tech! As we're sure you are aware, the market isn't just what it used to be due to a variety of reasons. Based on manufacturer product lead times, it is essential that summer AV and tech project planning begins now. Depending on the product, our vendors are anticipating a lead time that exceeds 4-6 months. 

To be safe, if you are even remotely interested in upgrading your spaces (classrooms, gymnasiums, libraries, auditoriums, etc.) start the shopping process today. Below is a link to a listing of our technology and AV partners. Contact them today to set up a site survey or a quote for products, installations, and other related services. Many of them offer flexible billing options to meet your budget and budget cycle upon request.

Technology Vendor Partners

Friday, February 4, 2022

COVID Antigen Tests

Are you looking for COVID antigen tests? School Specialty and AEA Purchasing can help. COVID test kits are available for purchase under our IFB019-E contract for instructional supplies with School Specialty. These test kits are NOT available online. To order or request a quote, contact your School Specialty rep.

Don't know who your rep is? Contact:

School Specialty
Helen Schleis

Thursday, February 3, 2022

Webinar: School Safety and Security Solutions

Is your school considering the implementation of enhanced security measures to protect your students, staff, and faculty? Are you curious about what options are available to you or what other schools are doing? If any of these questions are of interest to you, please consider joining Capitol Electronics for their upcoming webinar on school safety and security.

Capitol Electronics has solutions that will allow you to build out an integrated approach:

  • Intrusion Solutions
  • Entry/Exit Monitoring Solutions
  • Gunshot Detection
  • Environmental & Facility Monitoring Solutions
  • Panic/Duress
  • Lone Worker Personal Panic Buttons (bus drivers)

Carve out 30 minutes and join a free overview of these solutions and learn how they are being utilized in schools across the USA today.

Webinar: School Safety & Security
Date: Thursday, February 10
Time: 1 pm CST /2 pm EST
Register here

Capitol Electronics is an awarded vendor partner with AEA Purchasing. Through our contract, Iowa schools can save on panic button systems, thermal temperature scanners, and lightning detection. For more information on these systems and more, contact:

Contract code: AEPA #021

Wednesday, February 2, 2022

Webinar: Prevent Summer Slide with Summer Reading and Family Literacy

AEA Purchasing and Mackin are inviting you to a free webinar on creative ways to prevent summer slide with summer reading and family literacy programs!

Webinar: Prevent Summer Slide with Summer Reading
Click here for more info on the topic
Wednesday, February 9, 2022
3:15 PM CST
Register here

*After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Interested but can't make it to the webinar? Contact Mindy to discuss how Mackin can meet your needs and your budget using the AEA Purchasing contract!

Mindy Romero, Local Sales Rep
Cell: 319.899.9717
Toll-Free: 800.245.9540

Vendor Profile: Complete Book & Media Supply

Complete Book & Media Supply is an AEA Purchasing vendor partner providing wholesale books, journals, subscriptions, audio books, DVDs and digital media. Complete Book & Media Supply is excited to be your supplier for all the services you need!

AEA Purchasing discounts vary based on type, publisher and quantity ordered. Bulk discounts are available if ordering more than 25 copies of one title. For these occasions, it's suggested to request a quote for best pricing.

Complete Book and Media Supply
Kendall Montiegel
800-986-1775 x 105
Bid Reference: AEPA IFB 020-C

Tuesday, February 1, 2022

February Vendor Promotions!

Have you checked out the latest info and specials from our vendor partners?

What are you waiting for? 

Check out our February promotions today! New content is added daily.