All Richland One students to receive free breakfast, lunch this fall
All students in Richland One will be able to eat breakfast and lunch for free, regardless of household income, during the 2015-16 school year. The district tapped into a new federal program called Community Eligibility Provision, which provides an alternative solution to providing meals to low-income students without the burden of collecting free and reduced lunch eligibility applications.
“Paying for lunch can be a challenge for many families. Imagine families now having hundreds of dollars in extra money to use for other bills, instead of school lunch,” said Imogene Clarke, Richland One director of Student Nutrition Services. “Parents don’t have to send any money or take any other action for their children to receive school meals. This is a wonderful benefit to all families in Richland One.”
Richland One joins 33 other districts in South Carolina that will offer free meals to all students in their school systems. The Community Eligibility Provision program is part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National School Lunch Program.
Clarke said free meals will be provided at all 52 district schools and centers in Richland One and that she hopes it will bring more locally grown produce to students. Richland One serves more than 24,000 students.
The district recently launched its summer meal program, which provides breakfast or lunch to low-income elementary students during the summer months.