Students eating lunch in the cafeteria at Lowell Elementary School in Albuquerque, New Mexico on 22. August 2023. Photo Credit: AP/Susan Montoya Bryan

Society United States 14. September 2023

No Income, No Problem: School Meals Are Now “Permanently” Free Here

Eight states in the United States have just passed a law making all school breakfasts and lunches permanently free to all students, regardless of family income.

“We know that students learn better when they are well nourished, and we know that students a lot of time don’t know where their meal is going to come from. We’re taking that [fear] away,” says Emily Honer, director of nutrition programs for the Minnesota Department of Education.

The states of Minnesota, New Mexico, Colorado, Vermont, Michigan, Massachusetts, California, and Maine are all involved in the program. School meals can cost parents upwards of $1,500 per student per year, and many students have had to go with very little to eat throughout the school day when their account balance was overdrawn. Having access to not only enough food but nutritious food as well will allow students to perform at their best and focus on their education. The hope is that other states – and, eventually, the entire nation – will follow suit.

AP News

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