Part of school is the familiarity and comfort of school lunches, so we have tried to maintain that for kids during this uncertain time." -- Denise Boucher, director of food services
Since April, the Arlington public school system has provided weekly deliveries of free breakfasts and lunches to children and teens facing food insecurity in Arlington. This program will continue through the summer.
This continuing program means Arlington EATS will not run a separate summer lunch program this year.
All children and teens up through age 18 can receive meals through this program, regardless of whether they attend public schools or are eligible for free or reduced-price lunch. Families can sign up to receive weekly deliveries using this form, which is short and requires no financial information.
Every Wednesday, school staff and faculty deliver a seven-day supply of breakfasts and lunches. The meals are prepared by the food-services staff and follow U.S. Department of Agriculture nutritional guidelines.
Denise Boucher, director of food services, said, "Part of school is the familiarity and comfort of school lunches, so we have tried to maintain that for kids during this uncertain time." Meals include many popular foods, including carrots, strawberries, broccoli, frozen waffles, cereal, sandwiches, pizza and milk.
Arlington Public Schools and EATS are working together to raise awareness about the school meals program, which serves about 220 children each week. The schools' Food Services Department has contacted all families who were eligible for free and reduced-price lunch during the school year, and is sharing information throughout the school community.
EATS publicizes the program at EATS Market and on social media. “APS has made the program very accessible and easy to sign up for,” said Andi Doane, executive director of Arlington EATS, in a July 24 news release. “We want every family with children who could benefit from these nutritious meals to know it’s available.”
SNAP benefits expanded for children
All Massachusetts families with school-aged children who qualify for free or reduced-price school meals are eligible for Pandemic-EBT benefits.
Households will receive $5.70 per eligible student per day, or $28.50 a week. If you haven't received your card or are having issues with your P-EBT cards, click here >> or call the local SNAP partner, Arlington Health and Human Services, at 781-316-3419. Additional information about the program is available at here >> Families may participate in the school meals delivery program in addition to receiving Pandemic-EBT benefits.
This news announcement was published Saturday, July 25, 2020.
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