The USDA is turning up the volume on making sure more kiddos like us get to enjoy free breakfast and lunch at school. They’re doing this by expanding a super program called the Community Eligibility Provision – CEP.
This change means that about 3,000 extra school districts, especially those in high-need areas, can serve all students tasty and healthy meals without any cost. Tom Vilsack is excited about this and says it’s part of fulfilling a promise for healthy meals for all students made by the administration.
Before this cool change, schools or districts needed at least 40% of students from families receiving federal help to be part of CEP. But now, that number is down to 25%. This is going to make a big difference all over the place, especially in states that are all in for supporting healthy school meals.
Some cool states like California, Maine, and a few more have already made laws for schools to serve all students healthy meals for free. Now, more schools can hop on the CEP train and ensure no buddy goes hungry and everyone gets nutritious and yummy food.
Everyone’s saying CEP is a total win. It helps families save on food costs, makes sure more kids get food, wipes out school meal debt, and there’s no more awkward feeling about free meals. More kids joining means schools get more money to make meals even better.
Stacy Dean from the USDA thinks healthy meals are super important, just like teachers and books. More children can now look forward to delicious meals at school, and we’re getting closer to making sure every student across the nation gets healthy meals for free.
On top of that, USDA is throwing in extra financial help to schools and keeping up projects that help kids automatically get free or reduced-price meals. Source : wisconsinagconnection