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New Bill Encourages More Applicants For Free Or Reduce Price Meals

A new legislative proposal could require Florida schools to distribute free or reduce-price meal applications to all students, not just those in need. The bill applies to schools in the national school lunch program or the breakfast program.

Under the bill if a student owes money for five or more meals, the school will notify parents to complete and file the application. Plantation Democratic Representative Katie Edwards says, the goal of  her bill, is to make sure more eligible students are receiving free and reduced priced lunch.

“A first or second grader might be in line, they get to the cafeteria only to learn that mom or dad hasn’t put any money into their account and then so the child publicly in front of the rest of the classmates is told to either go to the back of the line or they are given a different type lunch and basically the child is singled out, shamed or ridiculed.”

The school will provide assistance to parents who need help completing the form.