H.E. Corley Elementary School fifth grader Tyra Jefferson will compete among the best kid cooks in the nation on the new Food Network series Food Network Star Kids, premiering Monday, August 22 at 8:00 p.m.
Hosted by actress-turned- food celebrity Tia Mowry and popular food writer, photographer and social media star Donal Skehan, Star Kids features 10 talented junior finalists participating in a variety of culinary, on-camera and social media challenges over six episodes for the chance to become the first-ever Food Network Star Kid winner and walk away with their own series on FoodNetwork.com and a feature in Food Network Magazine.
“I was so excited when I found out I was going to be on the show,” Tyra said. “I had to run in another room and scream. I had a pinch me moment and couldn’t believe it was real.”
Tyra and three other HEC students won last year’s District Five “Chopped” cooking contest held in May which was designed for fourth grade students as part of District Five’s federal Farm to Five grant. The competition allowed students to highlight the importance of providing fresh, healthy ingredients in school cafeterias. Tyra believes competing in this contest will help her on the show because “it was a competition and prepared me for any challenge I will face on Food Network Star Kids. I’m so excited to compete.”
Food Network and Cooking Channel Senior Vice President Didi O’Hearn praised Tyra and her other competitors, saying “These finalists have come from all over the country to compete, bringing with them ambition and incredible talent both in the kitchen and in front of the camera. Tia and Donal are fantastic mentors for the kids, having evolved their culinary skills while growing up in front of the camera, making them the perfect fit to help find the next generation of star chefs in the making.”
When asked about Tyra’s selection, H.E. Corley Elementary School principal Dr. Judy Franchini was ecstatic, saying “Tyra’s talent was evident when she participated in our cooking club. Her leadership shined when the HEC team won the district Healthy Lifestyles competition and won an award at the 4H regional competition. She is an impressive young lady. Our school family is very proud of her.”