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January 16, 2020
Breakfast After the Bell Passes in the Senate!

An Act Regarding Breakfast After the Bell passes unanimously in the Senate, following a unanimous House vote in November. Now it heads to the Governor's desk to become a law!

Project Bread applauds the Massachusetts Senate for unanimously passing An Act Regarding Breakfast After the Bell! We look forward to the Governor signing this bill as quickly as possible so that no child in our state has to start the school day on an empty stomach.

Study after study proves what we already know: hungry kids can’t learn. 1 in 9 Massachusetts children faces food insecurity. Passing this Breakfast After the Bell legislation would give as many as 150,000 additional students access to breakfast every school day. Because it is federally reimbursable, this program also stands to bring an estimated $25 million dollars into Massachusetts schools every year.

We are grateful for the leadership of our legislative champions, especially bill sponsors Senator Sal DiDomenico, and Representative Aaron Vega, Representative Andy Vargas. We also would like to thank the Senate Chair of the Joint Committee on Education, Senator Jason Lewis, and Senate President Karen Spilka.

“No child who shows up to school hungry can possibly be ready to learn,” said Senator Sal DiDomenico (D-Everett), the lead sponsor of the bill. “I have seen the success of breakfast after the bell in my own district, and I am confident that this legislation will help to ensure that every child in the Commonwealth has access to a stigma-free and nutritious breakfast. I would like to thank Project Bread for their contributions to the Rise and Shine Coalition that has worked tirelessly to ensure that all children of the Commonwealth are able to start their days ready to learn.”

“Too often, stigma and difficulty getting to school early enough to eat breakfast prevent students from participating,” said Erin McAleer, President of Project Bread. “Since 1995, Project Bread has been working district-by-district, school-by-school, to implement breakfast after the bell, and while we are proud of the progress we have made, we know that this legislation is needed to close the gap and ensure that children in high-poverty schools across the state will have access to school breakfast served after the start of the school day. Project Bread stands ready to support schools through implementation when this legislation becomes law.”

We, along with our partners from the Rise & Shine Coalition, look forward to the Governor signing this bill so it can be enacted into law and make significant progress addressing hunger in the classroom. 

Filed under: Informing Public Policy