Fall Issue: 2016
Free & reduced lunch a national program
The Kings School District is a part of the National School Lunch Program, which is a government funded program that helps schools all around the country. The National School Lunch Program offers free and reduced meals to eligible students all throughout the district. In order to receive free or reduced meals a family must have a certain income/house size. To see if a family is qualified for this program a parent must fill out the required form.
“Two factors that determine eligibility are household size and income. The income guidelines are set by the U.S.D.A.. They change yearly and are published every year (in July) for the upcoming school year.”, said Kings Food Service Director, Jennifer Arlinghaus.
For example, a home with three members (total kids and adults) with a weekly income of $500 would be eligible for Free meals. Other methods that qualify families is state assistance. If the family receives food stamps they can apply for the program as well. Also if families are homeless, migrant or foster children they too are eligible for the program.
A student can either receive free meals or reduced meals. Students eligible for free lunch receive one breakfast and one lunch free of charge. Students eligible for reduced lunch receive one breakfast costing 30 cents and one lunch costing 40 cents.
“Confidentiality is very important to the program and families, we do not want to risk a student feeling embarrassed or ashamed for receiving help from this program,” said Arlinghaus.
The process for receiving a free or reduced meals is the same as receiving a full priced meal. Every student is given a lunch code that they must use if they want to purchase a meal. When a student who is a part of the National School Lunch Program puts in their lunch code, their meal automatically is charged accordingly.
Students who qualified for the program last school year qualified for the first 30 days of this school year. Families that were on the program last year and have not completed a new application are no longer a part of the free or reduced meal program.
By Kate Baxter