School Breakfast Changes in the 2023-24 and 2024-25 School Years
All across Texas, kids are headed back to school. We at No Kid Hungry Texas know that with high inflation, food costs, fuel and other essentials many parents are having a hard time paying the bills and feeding their families. According to a poll conducted earlier this year, nearly three-quarters (73%) of Texans are having a harder time affording groceries now compared to the same time last year.
However, thanks to the 88th Texas Legislature, new investments in school meals are expanding access to free school breakfast for eligible students. Starting September 1, 2023, students who are eligible for reduced priced meals at school will receive school breakfast free for the next two school years (2023-2024 and 2024-2025).
Please note that some Texas school districts offer free breakfast and lunch to all enrolled students through the US Department of Agriculture’s Community Eligibility Provision. This expansion of free breakfast for eligible students will not affect your child’s ability to access school meals. If you are unsure if your school participates in the Community Eligibility Provision, please contact your school district.
More information on these changes can be found below.
School Administrator Support and Information:
- As a school administrator, you can support these efforts by encouraging parents to turn in their free and reduced priced eligibility form and share these changes with them utilizing this document to share these school meal program changes with the community. You can also use our general School Meals Marketing Toolkit to increase participation in school meals at the beginning of the year. TDA also has resources for communicating this change at squaremeals.org/reducedbreakfasts.
- If your school district participates in the Community Eligibility Provision, this change will not affect your district’s ability to serve free meals for enrolled students.
Parent and Community Support and Information:
- Unless your student is enrolled in a school or school district that has opted into the Community Eligibility Provision, families must enroll in free or reduced priced meals by filling out a meal application – also known as the free and reduced priced eligibility form. If you’re unsure if your school or school district operates the Community Eligibility Provision, please contact your school administrator.
- We know that a family’s income can change from year to year. You should fill out the form even if you’re not sure that you would qualify for free or reduced priced meals.
- It’s more than a meal. In addition to ensuring your student get’s school meals, meal applications can also help your family qualify for additional benefits like discounted exam fees and college applications, extracurriculars, scholarship opportunities, and even home wifi. It can also help your child’s school receive additional classroom resources that will support all students’ education.
- To fill out the form, visit your school/school district’s website. You can also get a paper copy from your child’s school.
- Finally, please spread the word! Tell your friends, family, and neighbors to check in with their child’s school to find out more.
Child Nutrition Department Information and Support:
- Evaluate options to cover or charge students until September 1, 2023. State grant funds cannot cover the student’s breakfast cost until September. Visit SquareMeals.org for additional information on this change, information on how to update point of service systems, and more.
- Consider utilizing this document to share these school meal program changes with the community. You can also utilize our general School Meals Marketing Toolkit to increase participation in school meals at the beginning of the year. TDA also has resources for communicating this change at squaremeals.org/reducedbreakfasts.
- Capitalize on this change in school breakfast programs by implementing Second Chance Breakfast, Breakfast After the Bell, or Breakfast in the Classroom. Learn more about these meal models here.
- If you have any additional questions, or if you need support reach out to us at email@example.com.