Northwest ISD announced Friday that it will offer free meals to all students in elementary and middle school students, reversing course from its plan just earlier this week.
The United States Department of Agriculture approved universal free breakfast and lunch to all children throughout the United States until the end of the 2021-2022 school year, an extension of the decision it made last year due to the pandemic. Typically, families would have to apply for free or reduced meals in the National School Lunch Program for their students, and their eligibility depending on their family’s income.
Earlier this week, Northwest ISD spokespeople said that the district was “not participating in the waiver … but instead will use the standard NSLP.” Those plans have changed.
The district said in a news release on Friday that Northwest ISD will offer free breakfast and lunch meals (one breakfast meal and one lunch meal per school day per student) during the 2021-22 school year for all students in elementary and middle school. The high school level will again use the standard National School Lunch Program, where students or their families can fill out applications to potentially qualify for free or reduced-cost meals.
The district is still encouraging all families who believe they qualify for free and reduced-cost meals to fill out the application, as there are other service benefits they can receive to relieve financial hardship.
As previously reported, Denton and Lewisville ISDs are offering the maximum benefit of free breakfast and lunch for all students, while Argyle ISD is only providing free meals to all students in 5th grade and under, and students in grades 6-12 can get free and reduced-price meals based on eligibility.