All K-12 students in Wayne-Westland Community Schools now can receive free breakfast and lunch as part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Community Eligibility Provision.
According to a news release, the provision allows schools in low-income areas to give their students free breakfasts and lunches without having to collect free and reduced meal applications from families.
"I am truly excited that we are now able to provide breakfast and lunch to all of our students. Excellence is the Expectation in Wayne-Westland and we strive to meet the needs of all students to create the best learning environment possible. Being under the Community Eligibility Provision will show to have great benefits in the district," Superintendent Shelley Holt said in a statement.
Students no longer have to worry about having a negative lunch balance and can avoid "the stigma associated with free and reduced-price status," according to the news release.
The state will be reimbursing the district for the costs of the meals and no money will be taken out of the general fund for the program.
Wayne-Westland's move follows Dearborn Public Schools' expansion of their free lunch program in September to cover all students K-12 under the same federal provision.
The Free Press reported that the program announced at the beginning of the school year would be retroactive, and students who already paid for lunches would have that money refunded to their school accounts, or might be eligible for a refund.
Source: WZZM 13