National School Lunch Week Highlights the Powerful Role That School Meals PlayView Post
for Healthy School Meals for All
We can’t turn back now.
To keep child hunger at bay during the pandemic, the U.S. Department of Agriculture issued waivers to allow schools to provide meals at no charge to all students, no matter their household income. Without these waivers, the alarming spikes in childhood hunger caused by the fallout of COVID-19 would have been even worse.
But the waiver authorizing free school meals for all students expired in June 2022.
The pandemic served as a valuable lesson on the critical importance of providing healthy meals to all students. We can’t let that lesson be forgotten.
It’s time to move forward, not turn back.
Healthy School Meals for All — offering school breakfast and lunch to all students at no charge to families —helps ensure that all children have the nutrition they need to grow and thrive.
We need to continue building on what we know works in order to fuel children’s health and learning.
Tell Congress hungry children can’t wait.
Healthy School Meals for All is also critical for advancing racial equity and justice, ensuring Black, Indigenous and Latinx students get the nutrition they need to support their education and beyond.SEND EMAIL
Benefits of Healthy School Meals for All
Children can’t learn on an empty stomach and school meals are just as important to students’ academic success as textbooks and transportation. Free school meals for all students leads to many benefits for students, families and school staff.Learn More
The Impact of Healthy School Meals for All
Hear from school food service professionals, parents, and teachers on the wide-ranging impacts of Healthy School Meals for All policies.
Healthy school meals for all students would be a game changer. Encourage your legislators to endorse the Universal School Meals Program Act of 2023. This bill would ensure that all children have access to nutritious meals in order to learn and thrive year-round as we recover from the pandemic and beyond.CONTACT YOUR LEGISLATOR
TELL YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS.
Across the U.S., parents, teachers, students, doctors, nurses, dieticians, policymakers and many others are raising their hand in support of Healthy School Meals for All. California, Maine, Colorado, Minnesota, New Mexico, Vermont, Michigan and Massachusetts have passed Healthy School Meals for All policies. Additionally, Nevada is putting pandemic funds to good use by offering one more year of free school meals to all students during the 2023-2024 school year. Many other states are considering similar legislation. Join us in being part of the solution!
State Healthy School Meals for All Campaigns
Anti-hunger, education, and child advocates across the country are calling for their state to implement Healthy School Meals for All. Check out their campaign websites here.
FRAC is proud to convene the National Healthy School Meals for All Coalition, a diverse group of national anti-hunger, education, health, school nutrition, and child advocacy organizations dedicated to building support for and passing nationwide free Healthy School Meals for All legislation. Read the Coalition Statement of Support.
The Coalition supports the following legislation:
Universal School Meals Programs Act (S.1568/H.R.3204)
School Meals Expansion Act (H.R.2567)
No Hungry Kids in School Act (H.R.3112)
Expanding Access to School Meals Act (H.R.3113)
Eight states are currently implementing Healthy School Meals for All policies, offering a free breakfast and lunch to all students, regardless of household income. They include California, Maine, Colorado, Minnesota, New Mexico, Vermont, Michigan and Massachusetts. Now that students in those states have access to healthy meals to support their success at schools, advocates are ensuring that the School Nutrition Programs operate as seamlessly as possible. Check out our resources here to learn more about student participation rates, service models, collecting household income information and more in states that have Healthy School Meals for All.
News, Videos & Resources
States Show Us What Is Possible With Free Healthy School Meals for All PoliciesView Post
Back to School Season Furthers Call for Free Healthy School Meals for AllView Post
What to Know About Michigan's Universal Free School Meals ProgramView Post
Vermont Governor Allows Free School Meals to Become Law Without SignatureView Post
New Mexico Governor Signs Universal School Meals into Law (K–12 Dive)View Post
Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz Signs Free School Meals Bill into Law (Minneapolis Star Tribune)View Post
Maine's Path to Healthy School Meals for All (Full Plates Full Potential)View Post
What Families Lost When the US Lost Universal Free School Meals (The Hill)View Post
Universal Free Meals to Students Is Now a Reality With Voters Largely in Favor (The Denver Post)View Post
Student Leader Applauds California's Free School Meals for All (Voice of OC)View Post
‘The Kids Are Just Happier’: Could California’s Universal School Meal Program Start a Trend? (The Guardian)View Post
Free School Meals: When the Feds Step Back, States Step Up (Bloomberg)View Post
‘Starting to Panic’: School Lunch Costs Return for US Families Just as Inflation Hits (Bloomberg)View Post
Advocates Call for White House to Speed Up Efforts to Secure Universal School Meals (K–12 Dive)View Post
N.C. Bill Would Provide Free Lunches to All Students in Public Schools (WECT)View Post
Nevada Students Won’t Need to Worry About School Meals Next Year (KLAS)View Post
Reykdal Calls for WA Legislature to Fund Free School Meals for All (Seattle Times)View Post
Help Make Healthy School Meals for All the New ‘Normal’ in MarylandView Post
Vermont Passes Healthy School Meals for All LegislationView Post
California and Maine Lead the Way With Healthy School Meals for AllView Post
Healthy School Meals for All Advances Racial EquityView Post
True Cost of Food Report from The Rockefeller Foundation Reinforces Benefits of Healthy School Meals for AllView Post