Just in time for the new academic year, Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña, City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, and Public Advocate Letitia James announced today that lunch will now be provided free to every student at all public schools across New York City.
Breakfast is already provided free of charge to students, and now both meals will be served at no cost to families.
“Students need healthy meals to stay focused in school, and it is a major step forward that every New York City student will have access to free breakfast and lunch every day,” Chancellor Fariña said in a statement. “Free School Lunch for All will provide financial relief to families and ensure all students are receiving nutritious meals so that they can succeed in the classroom and beyond.”
Last school year, only 75% of students were eligible for free lunch. Starting this school year, 100% of families will be eligible to receive free lunch through the Free School Lunch for All program which will provide over 200,000 more students with a free midday meal.
New York City will receive the highest reimbursement from the federal program, Community Eligibility Provision (CEP), which allows school districts to provide free meals to all enrolled students. The Free School Lunch for All program applies to all NYC schools and students who participate in SchoolFood, including charter and non-public schools.
All parents, regardless of income, must complete a School Meals Form to ensure that NYC schools will receive the federal funding needed for this program.
Go to the My School Apps website by December 29, 2017 to complete the form. Students will also be sent home with a hardcopy of the form and copies will be available at the main offices of schools.
Parents will receive full refunds if they’ve already added money to their children’s MySchoolBucks account for lunches this year, or if they have a remaining balance from previous years. The Department of Education will announce the details on how to receive a refund in the coming weeks.
Reminder: Flatbush Food Coop (1415 Cortelyou Road) will be giving away free apples tomorrow from 7:45am to 8:45am to celebrate the first day of school!