Hillsborough Schools to Expand ‘Grab and Go’ Meal Sites
The district will expand the program from 23 schools to 147.
HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY – In an effort to provide a greater number of children with the necessary nutritional essentials, Hillsborough County Public Schools will expand its “grab and go” meal sites to 147 school sites.
Beginning Monday (March 30), the district will significantly increase the number of schools that offer a nutritious meal for anyone 18 years old and younger – going from 23 to 147 school sites (see list below). This expansion represents an 84 percent increase in sites and provides a clear message that the well-being of students is the district’s greatest priority.
Student Nutrition Services worked with the U.S. Department of Agriculture to obtain approval to increase more sites – allowing the district to feed more children closer to their homes.
Hillsborough’s “grab and go” meals have already had a tremendous impact on the children in the community, officials said. By Friday (March 27), nutrition services staff and workers with the transportation office had served nearly 84,000 meals – each meal includes both a breakfast and lunch portion. The need for meals had steadily increased each day last week.
Each location will start serving food to those 18 years old and under at 9 a.m. and remain open until 1 p.m. daily. Students are only allowed to receive food one time each day; however, they can pick up both breakfast and lunch at that one time.
In addition, bus drivers and staff will transport meals and instructional materials into neighborhoods beginning Monday The pickup sites can be found on the district’s website.
“Our school district understands the immediate need to offer additional ‘grab and go’ sites. Many families depend on the school district to provide breakfast and lunch for their students. With schools being closed, we must think differently and find proactive solutions to extend nutritious meals to our learners that will allow them to remain focused and intellectually sharp. I am ecstatic that we are able to expand our efforts and help communities and families in need,” Superintendent Addison Davis said.
About 63 percent of Hillsborough students – about 123,000 children – quality for free and reduced price meals.
“We know many of our families are struggling and we must do all we can to break down barriers for our children. I am so proud of our student nutrition staff and our transportation employees for working hard and being that comfort for our families. These meals will ensure that students have accessibility to nutritious meals and have a strong start to their eLearning experience,” said Melissa Snively, school board chair.
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