DCPS free lunch waiver expires

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Aug. 6—Daviess County Public Schools' federal waiver to offer free meals for all students has expired.

DCPS Food Service Director Connie Beth Fillman said the waiver was in place because of COVID-19, and there is not an option to renew for the upcoming school year.

"District-wide, about 50% of our students receive free or reduced lunch," she said.

Owensboro Public Schools is part of the Community Eligibility Program (CEP), which allows free meals for all students. Fillman said DCPS does not qualify for that program.

"CEP is based on the number of students that receive statewide eligibility," she said. "That means students whose families receive SNAP benefits and medicaid. We have looked into it for years, and we're very close to making it work, but we aren't there yet."

Fillman said she reevaluates the numbers monthly because students are consistently being added into those statewide numbers.

DCPS was approved for Provision 2, a program that allows all elementary school students in the district to receive free breakfast. It is an automatic enrollment program that does not require forms to be filled out by parents or legal guardians.

The price for breakfast and lunch will remain the same as it was pre-COVID-19.

Fillman said students on free or reduced lunch, even if they do not eat at the school, qualify to have their student fees waived or reduced.

To apply for free or reduced lunch, visit www.daviesskyschools.org.