• At the start of the 2022-2023 school year, over 726,000 students at nearly 2,000 schools lost access to no-cost school meals.
  • An estimated 1 in 7 New York children – disproportionately Black, Brown, Native, and rural – experience hunger and food insecurity.
  • Despite New York State’s higher cost of living, a family of four making just $51,400 misses the cutoff for free or reduced price meals under the federal programs.
  • In addition to the stigma and administrative burdens associated with the current tiered schools meals program, New York children are trapped in an estimated $25M of school meal debt.

Policy Proposal

  • Provide breakfast and lunch at no-cost for all students each school day
  • Ensure school meals follow NSLP and SBP guidelines
  • Cancel student meal debt for all New York students
  • Maximize federal reimbursements by leveraging existing provisions