Kids are cooling off on this hot summer day at Smother's Park in Owensboro. In less than a month, Owensboro Public School students will start a new school year. But this year, parents will have one less thing to worry about, paying for school meals.
"I think that's great. That will help a lot of lower income families that couldn't necessarily have the means to pay the prices needed for school lunches and breakfast," Jennifer Cronin said.
Dr. Nick Brake is the Superintendent of Owensboro Public Schools. He said the school system qualifies for the community eligibility option, which is through the national school lunch program. The superintendent said they will provide breakfast and lunch for 3,000 students from preschool through 8th grade.
"I think the important thing is that you provide a nutritious meal. All kids learn better when they provide a nutritious meal. I have kids that like to zip out the door in the morning without breakfast and sometimes being able to have that opportunity for breakfast for all kids I think is important," Dr. Brake said.
He said this federally funded program will help families save, and they don't even have to sign up.
"When you start putting that together for five days a week for the entire school year, for maybe two or three kids, that certainly adds up so, parents won't need to send lunch money anymore with their kids," Dr. Brake said.
Dr. Brake said he is thrilled to share the good news, and start the school year on a high note.
School officials said the no-cost meals will start on August 7th, and will continue through May. The superintendent said he hopes they will be able to renew the program in the future.