All students in grades PreK-12 will eat breakfast and lunch at no cost to them effective the first official day of the 2023-2024 school year, which begins implementation of the no-cost breakfast and lunch servings on school campuses for four years. This benefit to Caldwell County Schools families is part of a key provision in the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act.
The Community Eligibility Provision (CEP) of the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act is a meal service option for schools in high-poverty areas, which is calculated by the number of students eligible per school for free and reduced meals. CEP allows participating schools to provide breakfast and lunch to all students at no charge and without the burden of collecting and processing school meal applications. Instead, schools that have adopted CEP are reimbursed using a formula based on the percentage of students participating in other means-tested programs.
Since students will eat at no cost to them, this necessitates the suspension of all charging options for meals. If students would like to add à la carte items to their meal, payment will be required at the time of purchase.