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Meeting the Needs of our Community: Child Nutrition and Food Service Program

HILLSBOROUGH, NC 13 NOVEMBER 2017- Summer Food Service Programs were established by the US Department. of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) in connection with the NC Department of Instruction (NCDPI) to ensure that children in low income households continue to receive nutritious meals when school is not in session. It is an unfortunate fact that there are students in Orange County Schools (OCS) that may not eat regularly unless school is in session. Orange County Schools provides nutritious meals, free of charge, during the summer months at various sites throughout the school district.

Free meals that meet the federal guidelines are provided to all children at approved sites in areas with significant concentrations of children in low income households. The site must be located in a needy area (where 50% or more of the children residing in the area are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals using school data or census data).

Since 2015, Orange County Schools has expanded the number of sites available during the summer for students to receive meals for breakfast or lunch. In 2015, there were five sites that offered summer meals. This past summer, 2017, there were ten sites that offered summer meals for students. The sites were not just located at schools; some were community centers and residential complexes.

The number of meals that OCS has served at sites during the summer has increased dramatically over the same time period as the expansion of site locations. In 2015, the total number of meals served during the summer was 3,715. In 2017, the total number of meals served during the summer was 17,857. In all, from 2015 to 2017, OCS has served 31,012 meals to students during the summer months.

Orange County Schools is committed to meeting the needs of all of our students. Compared throughout the state, OCS ranked fifth in meeting the needs of students via our summer food service program in 2017. With the continued support and dedicated work of our Board of Education, our staff, and community partners, Orange County Schools will continue to push to be first in meeting the needs of our students.

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