Free and Reduced Lunch

Governor Sununu has signed a bill to expand free breakfast for low-income students. The new law requires schools to offer free breakfast to students from families whose income formerly qualified them for reduced-price breakfast.

 

The reduced price was $0.30 per meal; advocates said when totaled for an entire school year, this was prohibitive for poor families with multiple kids.

 

NH Department of Education

The free summer meals program started in Manchester on Friday, the first day of summer vacation. The program offers free breakfast, lunch, snacks or dinner for any child 18 years old and under when school’s out. Other communities, including Berlin and Nashua, will begin the program when their school years end.

 

Valerie Carignan, the Food and Nutrition Director at Southern New Hampshire Services, a non-profit running some of the sites, says the program abides by USDA standards to guarantee kids get a nutritious meal.

 

USDA / Flickr CC

The Manchester School Board voted Monday night not to apply for a new federal program that provides free breakfast and lunch to all students, but the state’s largest city is not alone in opting out of the program.

Any school where forty percent of students receive food stamps (SNAP), or temporary assistance for needy families (TANF) is eligible for a USDA program which began in 2010, but was only expanded to New Hampshire this year. It ensures that every student is fed breakfast and lunch.

But there’s a catch.