Monday, November 21, 2016

Free lunches in schools for many American children.

Here is a student reaction paper about the child nutrition program that provides free or reduced price lunches at many American schools:

National School Lunch Program, or NSLP, helps children from poor families receive a good lunch at school every day. The school district will give these children a free or price reduced lunch.  Reduced priced lunches do not cost more than 40¢. In order for families to get their kids a free or price reduced lunch, they have to submit an application to the school district. The application can be sent home with the child at the beginning of the school year. However, the start of school is not the only time that a family can apply. They can apply at any point in the school year. They just have to request the application. Also, if a family is receiving SNAP, TANF (Temporary Assistance to Needy Families), and FDPIR (Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations), their children are automatically able to receive these special lunches. The children that receive this can get these special priced lunches as soon as they start school in kindergarten or first grade until they graduate from high school. 

This program helps quite a few families who might not be able to afford to give their kids lunch money every day. There are children who go to school everyday and have never eaten a school lunch. For example, in my high school, if we did not have lunch money, they would give us a cheese sandwich and a carton of white milk. Looking around the lunch room, there were several kids who almost never ate lunch because they could not afford to put money in their account and they did not want milk and a cheese sandwich. The teachers in the lunch room did nothing to make sure that every kid ate that day. The application procedure for this program seems pretty lengthy. However, this would help the school decide whether these families actually need it (“need” is simply determined by the children’s household income). The families who do not need this program and falsely claim low incomes so their children quality for it take away the opportunity for other families to give their children a proper lunch. If a family is already receiving SNAP, TANF, or FDPIR, then it is obvious that these families need more help than most families who are not receiving benefits from these programs. For the families receiving benefits through these programs, their children will receive free school lunches.

If anyone wants to know more about the NSLP, there is some recent (FY 2015 estimates) information available at

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