Sunday, September 08, 2013

Should it suck to be poor?

Apparently not. Since not only will we take care of your every need, we'll make sure you don't suffer from the stigma...........

Some students toted lunchboxes to the first day of school in Boston this week, but district administrators are expecting that could become a more unusual sight as parents learn about a federal program that is now providing all public school students in the city with free breakfast and lunch.

The nation's oldest school system has joined a program of the U.S. Department of Agriculture that has spread to 10 states and the District of Columbia that offers students two free meals every school day, whether or not their families can afford them.

"It's one less weight and one less burden for parents," said Joshua Rivera, whose son is a second-grader at the Maurice J. Tobin School in Boston's Roxbury section.

Known as Community Eligibility Option, the program is part of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. For schools to qualify, federal officials said, more than 40 percent of students have to be getting food stamps or aid through certain other federal assistance programs.

Besides easing hunger, school officials said, the program eliminates the expense and time of handling paperwork for students who qualify for reduced or free meals and also helps erase a stigma that plagued some students from poor families.


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