Ogden School District offers students free meals at eight different locations
OGDEN, Utah — This school year, eight locations within the Ogden School District will offer students meals free of charge.
Students who attend Bonneville Elementary, Heritage Elementary, Hillcrest Elementary, James Madison Elementary, Lincoln Elementary, Odyssey Elementary, Mound Fort Jr. High and George Washington High School can receive meals for free. There are no constraints around who can and cannot get free meals.
“These families are not required to submit an application for free, reduced-price, and paid student meals,” said a press release from Ogden School District.
The Ogden School District School Food Authority is able to provide free meals through the Community Eligibility Provision program (CEP).
According to the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture website, CEP is a non-pricing meal service for schools and school districts in low-income areas. The program allows schools to serve breakfast and lunch to students at no cost whatsoever.
How much does the program cost?
Scott Simpson, former executive director of the Utah Republican Party, joined Dave and Dujanovic to discuss the topic of free meals for students.
Simpson voiced concerns about the cost it would take to feed all students at public schools for free in Utah. When Dujanovic mentioned other states offering free meals to students Simpson responded with, “that’s not a compelling argument for me Debbie.”
Recently, California became the first state to adopt a program allowing all public school students in kindergarten through 12th grade, regardless of their parents’ income to receive free breakfast and lunch. The LA Times said the California Universal Meals program “… requires public schools (including charters) to offer all students two “nutritiously adequate school meals” per school day, with state taxpayers footing the bill.”
Mark Peterson with the Utah State Board of Education told KSL NewsRadio that the decision to offer universal free school lunch is not the Board’s to make. Furthermore, Peterson says nothing is being considered at this time in terms of free lunches.
However, the Utah Board of Education is using COVID-19 relief money for elementary and secondary schools to ensure parents of students do not go into debt buying school lunches this year.
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