More ‘talking bananas!’ Dole partners with Virginia Beach school cafeteria manager to inspire more students

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Students at Kingston Elementary School in Virginia Beach know them as "talking bananas." Stacey Truman, the school's cafeteria manager, sees them as ways to bring positivity to her students.

Truman received national attention for her practice of writing inspirational messages on students' banana peels, with phrases like, "You are wise," "Keep trying" and "Never give up."

Now she and the school are partnering with the Dole Food Company to make sure every one of Kingston's students receives a "talking banana" at Friday's school lunch.

Dole is providing the school with 550 bananas to allow Truman and her team to write individual messages on each one. Each student will also receive a healthy kid's cookbook, donated by Dole.

The banana peels might get thrown away at the end of lunch, but the message still resonates with students long after school gets out.

"They're reading it as they come through the line," Truman said. "It may not be what they choose, you know, that just wasn't the fruit that they wanted for the day, but they were still like, 'Oh that's pretty cool.'"