Identification and enrollment will no longer be required for free meals by the Oklahoma City Public School District, it has been learned.
The free meals program is, once again, open to any child.
Now, no ID or proof of enrollment is required.
The federal Department of Agriculture has extended its Summer Food Service Program through the end of 2020 or until available funding runs out.
The department hadn’t extended the program by the first day of the school year. That forced the district to require a school I.D. or other proof of enrollment to pick up meals on the first two days of school.
Now, the extension will open Oklahoma City’s high-demand meal service to all children.
Breakfasts and lunches will be served at 71 sites across the district, including every district school.
A list of meal service locations is available online at okcps.org.
Families can pick up meals from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Mondays through Fridays while classes are in session.
The school district is conducting the first nine weeks of the school year online. Virtual class schedules include a lunch break during meal pick-up times.
The district has served 1.7 million meals since schools closed in March because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Nutrition staff distributed grab-and-go food packs at school buildings, parks and other locations.
Continuing food service was a top priority in the aftermath of school closures, as many students depend on school cafeterias to get daily meals.
More than half of all students in Oklahoma City schools qualify for free and reduced-price lunches because of low family income.
“Just because our students are learning remotely doesn’t mean it’s not important for OKCPS to provide healthy meals for our students,” Supt. Sean McDaniel said in a statement.
“Research suggests that children perform at a higher level when they’ve had a healthy meal full of the nutrients their growing minds and bodies need.”
The school district handed out 892,800 meals between March and May.
The district continued service through the summer and distributed 516,900 from June to July.
Schools have given out 282,500 meals since Aug. 10.