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School Meals

Child Nutrition Program

Free Meals for Kids & teens

School meals are FREE for ALL students in MA this school year, through 6/30/22.

When the school day begins, worrying about food should end. Free school meals are the one-stop solution to making parents’ lives easier and kids’ lives more joyful, delicious, and community-oriented. Your child participating does not take away meals from anyone else—in fact, the more participation in school meals goes up, the more funding schools receive. Everyone eats—and it’s better when we do it together.

Stay full. Eat at School.

The Benefits of School Meals

  • Saves you time
  • Saves you money
  • Boosts revenue for your child’s school, which is reinvested in improving your child's school meal program.
  • More students eating school meals helps break down barriers and stigma for other children eating school meals. 

Frequently Asked Questions

All schools that participate in the National School Lunch Program provide free school meals. This includes all public schools and most charter schools in Massachusetts.

Lunch is free for all students and is served in every school. Many schools also offer breakfast and some even provide a snack. If your child’s school serves lunch, breakfast, and a snack, all are available at no cost. If you are unsure of what meals are offered by your child's school, contact your school district directly to find out.

Yes, schools are currently operating in person and free school meals are available in school to all students. 

  • For students attending school in person, meals are served in school Monday through Friday on school days.
  • Some school districts may offer open Grab & Go free meal sites for unenrolled children ages 0-21 in their community (such as non-school age children, younger siblings, etc.). Contact your local school district to inquire if they are operating Grab & Go sites for unenrolled children in your community.

Yes, your school district will make free school meals accessible to students who are quarantined due to exposure to COVID-19. If this should happen, contact your school to find out how to receive meals.

Your child participating in free school meals does not take away meals from anyone else – in fact – it helps other children and families who need it most!  All families are encouraged to take advantage of free school meals because it:

  • Saves you time & money
  • Boosts revenue for your child's school
  • Breaks down barriers and stigma for other children who eat school meals

Yes, school meals are required to follow a federal meal pattern that includes minimum amounts of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. School meals must also meet limits for sodium, saturated fat, and overall calories. Menus often feature locally sourced food supporting farms, fisheries, and other producers in local communities.

If you live in Massachusetts and need food assistance, start by calling Project Bread's FoodSource Hotline today at 1-800-645-8333 or visit our Get Help page to learn more. 

We can connect you to programs that will help you afford groceries and put food on the table. 

Calling us is always free, and confidential.  Our counselors can assist you with:

  • Finding out if you are eligible for SNAP (financial assistance for groceries) and help you apply. 
  • Finding free meals for your kids in your community
  • Learning about how to use your HIP benefits
  • Finding meal programs and food pantries 
  • and more...

If you received P-EBT benefits, there is a good chance you could qualify for SNAP benefits, call us today and our counselors will pre-screen you for SNAP to find out if you are eligible.