Reminder: Lunch served on early release days

Maine DOE is reminding districts the school lunch meal must be offered to students each school day, including planned half days and early release, as part of the National School Lunch Program Agreement to Participate.

The Policy Statement for Free and Reduced Price Benefits states the local education agency accepts responsibility for providing free and reduced price meals or free milk to eligible children in schools under its jurisdiction. If it is a scheduled half-day or early release, a basic approved lunch must be offered. Many districts opt to offer fewer choices on these days including a bag lunch served as a “grab and go.”

The participation agreement is signed by the superintendent of every district as part of the annual policy packet.

For additional information or questions contact the Department’s Child Nutrition Programs Coordinator Walter Beesley at walter.beesley@maine.gov or 624-6875.