Schools play a vital role in promoting children’s health and well-being. In the United States, schools contribute significantly to children’s overall diet quality and can provide up to half of their daily calories, especially among children from low-income families. Providing healthy school meals for all is a policy opportunity to help all children eat healthier. Healthy School Meals for all, also known as universal free school meals, provides all enrolled children in a school operating the National School Lunch or School Breakfast Programs a free breakfast or lunch, regardless of their family’s income. A systematic review included in a Special Issue in the journal Nutrients highlights the international evidence regarding the impact of healthy school meals for all on students’ school meal participation rates, nutrition and dietary intakes, food security, academic performance, attendance, body mass index (BMI), and school finances. This infographic presents the 7 key findings from the systematic review that reveal how healthy school meals for all benefit students and schools.
Published: June 2021
Publisher: Healthy Eating Research
Costs, Reach, and Benefits of COVID-19 Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer and Grab-and-Go School Meals for Ensuring Youths’ Access to Food During School ClosuresSchool meals are associated with improved nutrition and health for millions of US children, but school closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted children’s access to school meals. Two policy approaches, the Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT) program, which provided the cash value of missed meals directly to families on debit-like cards to use for More
Pandemic-EBT and Grab-and-Go School Meals: Costs, reach, and benefits of two approaches to feeding children during school closures — Lessons from COVID-19 responsesCOVID-related school closures across the United States in spring 2020 disrupted the school meal programs that provide critical access to healthy food for millions of children — including children in elementary and middle school and adolescents in high school — from households with low incomes, leading to increased food insecurity. The United States Department of More