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Free lunch to be offered at KLR, RJK and Cooke during 2015-16 school year

August 10, 2015

Cooke, Kaiser and Rutherford schools will once again offer all students breakfast and lunch free of charge. These schools are eligible based on criteria set by the Community Eligibility Program.

Eligibility is based upon the following elements:

There is a formula in place, which the district uses to calculate a school’s eligibility for the free meal program. There is a common misconception that free and reduced lunches are related as they pertain to this program. In fact, they are completely separate categories of eligibility. The Community Eligibility Program is based solely on the percentage of students who are "categorically eligible" for FREE (not reduced) meal benefits. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the NYS Department of Education require that at least 40 percent of a school’s student population must be "categorically eligible" for FREE meals in order for a school to be eligible.

The district makes decisions about eligibility for each school based on information provided by the New York State Department of Education, Medicaid and other agencies related to social services.

During the school year, students in these schools will follow the regular procedure of inputting their ID numbers when choosing a meal; however, no charges will be made to students' accounts. Students may continue to use their accounts for the purchase of "extras" or snacks.

Anyone with questions or concerns is encouraged to contact Director of Food Services Andrew "Chef Andy" Yeomans at 845-794-7700, ext. 10971.