Buffalo (N.Y.) Schools Offering Free "Alternate" Lunches

Friday, December 2, 2011

The school board is close to adopting a policy that would make sure every student will be able to eat lunch at school, even if they don't have any money.

The lunch would not be the hot meal provided for students who fill out an application for a free or reduced lunch subsidized by the federal government. Instead, students get a cheese sandwich, 1% milk and fruit. The funding for those "alternate" meals would come from the school district's general fund.

The district's most recent policy already provides "alternate" meals for students in grades K-4, at a cost of about $49,000 a year to the district, said Bridget O'Brien Wood, Director of the District's Food Services Department. She estimates expanding the program to include older students would cost about $60,000 a year.

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