SCUSD expands free breakfast program
Students across Sacramento City Unified School District can now start their day with a free, nutritious breakfast thanks to the district’s expanded participation in the federal school meal program.
With “universal breakfast,” students at all SCUSD elementary, K-8, middle and high schools are being offered free breakfast regardless of family income status. SCUSD is reimbursed for the cost of the meals by the federal government.
To help advertise the program, the district held a Universal Breakfast Open House on Tuesday at John Still K-8 School. Hundreds of students joined Superintendent José L. Banda for a breakfast that included breakfast pizza, yogurt, fresh fruit and milk.
In 2013-14, SCUSD’s Nutrition Services Department served about 10,000 breakfasts daily, or 1.8 million for the school year. The department hopes to increase that number this year.
Research shows that schools with effective breakfast programs tend to have higher student academic achievement than similar schools without robust breakfast programs.
A successful breakfast program can raise attendance rates and lower absenteeism and tardiness.
SCUSD is funded by the state based on daily attendance, so boosting the breakfast program helps with the bottom line.