August 20, 2012
Are all kids eating?
Heathly nutrition is a vital part of learning and this is the perfect time to think about school meals. Last year half of all students in Oregon qualified for free or reduced price meals (a decade ago that percentage was only one third). For these students, the availability of the National School Lunch, School Breakfast and Afterschool Meal programs shield them from hunger and increase their family's food security.
Back to "After" School
Nearly every school in Oregon serves its students lunch. Most also offer breakfast. But only a fraction offer meals or snacks in after school settings. Federal reimbursement is available to schools nonprofits and local governments to serve healthy meals to youth in after school programs (and on the weekends and during short breaks). Mini-grants are available this year from the Oregon Dept. of Education to help after school programs start operating the federal program, or if they're current sponsors, to expand their service to more kids.
Find out more about the USDA Afterschool Meal & Snack Program, and join us in extending it to all kids in after school care.
- FACT SHEET- Learn about program basics
- GUIDE- In-depth information on how the program works
- QUIZ- Assess your eligibility to serve meals at a program you run
- FUNDS- Find out about mini-grants available for start-up or program expansion (this school year only!)
- CONTACT US- learn about programs in your community and how you can help
All Kids Count
Affordable school meals are only beneficial if you recieve them. Many teachers and school administrators feel the number of students applying is smaller than the number who should qualify, based on their family's low income. This hurts kids and our communities. Information from applications helps direct private and public support to high-need schools. Many programs, including summer and after school nutrition programs, are only available to areas that reach a certain threshhold. It's important that all kids are counted.
Partners for a Hunger Free Oregon has compiled policies and tips to increase the number of eligible students who return applications for free or reduced price school meals. Find out how schools, parents, even businesses can help!
- Tips to increase school meal applications
- Link to Oregon's online Household Application for Free and Reduced Price School Meals
- Find Oregon school's Free/Reduced numbers
- Food Research and Action Center's Guide on Qualifying Students and policy information
- Direct Certification- an accurate, efficient way to determine eligibility
- How Free/Reduced rates impact summer and after school meal programs