Free Meals for kids 18 and under

Free Meals for Kids 18 and Under

DCSD Nutrition Services Free Meals:

As many of you have read in the news, the USDA made the surprise announcement to reverse a prior decision and make ALL meals free to any kid 18 years of age and under until December 31, 2020 or when funding runs out. Effective immediately, students at all schools serviced by Nutrition Services will have access to healthy and FREE meals everyday. This will be in place for in person learners as well as eLearners and their siblings. Nutrition Services is ecstatic with the news and working quickly to be ready to handle the expected increase in volume for in person meals AND remote meal bags. No reimbursable meals will be charged to student accounts. Ala carte items will continue to be sold at all levels.


Frequently asked questions: 

  1. Q: How do eLearners and Hybrid learners access the free meals?

A: On In-person days, students will go through the normal cafeteria line to choose their meal. Starting September 18, 2020, remote free meals will be available at pickup sites as they were during Summer Feeding. The weekly free meal bags can be picked up on Fridays between 1:00 pm and 2:00 pm. The meals are free for all children 18 years and under. Pre-orders are no longer necessary. All neighborhood Elementary and Middle Schools will be pick up locations. 

  1. Q: Does this mean that we no longer need to apply for the Free and Reduced Meal Benefit Program this school year?

A: No. Please complete an application at Having an approved Free and Reduced Meal Benefit application does so much more than just giving access to free/reduced school meals. Fees can be waived at schools and transportation/bus fees; college exam fees and application fees can be waived; and it provides additional funding to our school district.

  1. Q: Is this for lunch only?

A: No, it includes one free lunch and one free breakfast per day. Breakfast varies per school site. 

  1. Q: What does this USDA funding for “free meal” include?

A: This includes one free lunch and one free breakfast daily. Breakfast varies by school site. Lunch consists of an entree, a milk and/or fruit/veggie. The student must receive the entree and one more item to be a free meal. Breakfast consists of an entree plus one other item. Water will continue to be offered with meals at elementary and middle school sites. 

  1. Q: Who qualifies for the free meals?

A: All children 18 years and under regardless of where they live or what school they are enrolled in.

  1. Q: Where are the pick up locations for weekly meal bags?

A: All DCSD neighborhood elementary and middle school sites.

  1. Q: Do I have to come into the building to pick up the free meal bags?

A: No. It is curbside pick up. You do not need to enter the building.

  1. Q: What if I cannot pick up free meal bags during the time frame given?

A: The free meal bags may be picked up by anyone on your child’s behalf. Your child does not need to be present. Perhaps a neighbor or another family member can pick them up for you. In time, we hope to expand our staffing resulting in more pick up times.

  1. Q: Why may your child’s account be charged for food items? 

A: For the in person learning students, age appropriate ala carte items and snacks will be sold at a cost. Also, a second entree will be sold at a cost. These items will be charged to student accounts

  1. Q: Will prior negative balances be wiped out?

A: No, prior debts still need to be paid.

  1. Q: Will the meals charged in the past two weeks since school started be refunded?

A: We are waiting on USDA guidance on this. 

  1. Q: How long will the USDA funding for the free meals last?

A: USDA funding for the free meals is to be used through December 31, 2020; or until funding runs out barring any new funding. Paid meals will resume January 1, 2020

  1. Do I still need to add money to my child’s My School Bucks account?

  1. It depends. Meals will not be charged to student accounts. However, for ala carte items, such as juice, snacks or seconds, funds will need to be in a child’s account to be purchased. 

Website by SchoolMessenger Presence. © 2020 Intrado Corporation. All rights reserved.

Douglas County School District Nondiscrimination Notice: In compliance with Titles VI & VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008, and Colorado law, the Douglas County School District RE-1 does not unlawfully discriminate against otherwise qualified students, employees, applicants for employment, or members of the public on the basis of disability, race, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, religion, ancestry, or need for special education services. Discrimination against employees and applicants for employment based on age, genetic information, and conditions related to pregnancy or childbirth is also prohibited in accordance with state and/or federal law. Complaint procedures have been established for students, parents, employees, and members of the public. The School District’s Compliance Officer and Title IX Coordinator to address complaints alleging sexual harassment under Title IX is Ted Knight, Assistant Superintendent, 620 Wilcox Street, Castle Rock, Colorado,, 303-387-0067. Complaints regarding violations of Title VI, (race, national origin), Title IX (sex, gender), Section 504/ADA (handicap or disability), may be filed directly with the Office for Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Education, 1244 North Speer Blvd., Suite 310, Denver, CO 80204. Complaints regarding violations of Title VII (employment) and the ADEA (prohibiting age discrimination in employment) may be filed directly with the Federal Office of Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 303 E. 17th Ave., Suite 510, Denver, CO 80202, or the Colorado Civil Rights Commission, 1560 Broadway, Suite 1050, Denver, CO 80202.