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McCrossan, E.; Fornaro, E.G.; Servello, S.; Hawes, P.; Erdem, E.; Struloeff, K.

Objective: Provide a nuanced understanding of how Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program-Education (SNAP-Ed) implementers decide what programming a school is ready to implement and the organizational factors that facilitate the initial implementation of programming in schools. Design: Case studies conducted at schools during 2018–19. Setting: Nineteen School District of Philadelphia schools receiving nutrition programming funded by SNAP-Ed. Participants: Interviews were conducted with 119 school staff and SNAP-Ed implementers. A total of 138 hours of observations of SNAP-Ed programming were completed. Phenomenon of Interest: How do SNAP-Ed implementers decide what PSE programming a school is ready to implement? What organizational factors can be developed to facilitate the initial implementation of PSE programming in schools? Analysis: Interview transcripts and observation notes were coded deductively and inductively on the basis of theories of organizational readiness for programming implementation. Results: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program-Education implementers focused on schools’ existing capacity when determining readiness for programming. Conclusions and Implications: Findings suggest that if SNAP-Ed implementers only focus on a school's existing capacity when assessing its readiness for programming, the school might not receive the programming it needs. Findings suggest SNAP-Ed implementers could develop a school's readiness for programming by concentrating efforts on cultivating relationships, program-specific capacity, and motivation at schools. Findings have equity implications for partnerships in underresourced schools that may have limited existing capacity and consequentially could be denied vital programming. © 2023 Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior