Dear Flanagan-Cornell Unit District #74 families,
The federal program that has allowed school districts across the country to offer free breakfast and lunch to all students regardless of income has expired as of June 30, 2022. Since 2020, this program has eliminated the need to collect payments for school meals for any student.
At this time, the federal government has not extended the waivers for next school year to allow free meals for all students. As a result, schools across the nation will be reverting back to free and reduced-price meals based on income eligibility guidelines set by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
During the 2022-23 school year, families who do not qualify for free or reduced lunch will have to pay for school meals. Students whose families are eligible for free or reduced price breakfast or lunch will be able to access meals next school year at no cost or a discounted rate.
Since this adjustment may create a financial burden on some of our families, we are writing to give you advance notice of this change. Between now and the start of next school year, our Board of Education, district administration and Director of Food Services will continue to explore ways we can help families with this adjustment. At no point would we ever want any child to go hungry at school.
At this time, we do not need any information from families. As we have done in the past, we will collect documentation at the time of registration to determine who qualifies for free or reduced meals. We will be in contact closer to registration about what documentation will be needed.
The following USDA link provides answers to some common questions regarding this change.
If you have any questions, please contact the district office at 815-796-2233.
Dr. Ryan Hansen