MSD announces changes to nutrition program

824

 by Terry Rogers

 

MSD Child Nutrition hands out meals to students

Milford School District Announces Changes to Nutrition Program 

UPDATED SEPTEMBER 3, 2020

On Thursday, August 27, the Summer Feeding Program for Milford School District came to an end. On September 9, the District will begin offering meals through the National School Breakfast and Lunch Program.

“When COVID-19 came around and we had to do an unanticipated closure, we were allowed to start our Summer Feeding Program in March rather than wait until June,” Sharron Forest, Child Nutrition Supervisor, said. “We have been doing the Summer Feeding Program since March. Once we start regular school of any type, even in a virtual format, we must start using the National School Breakfast and Lunch Program which ends our Summer Feeding Program.”

Parents may come to the school at designated times in order to pick up meals for their children. These are the same meals served when a child is in school but they are being offered curbside rather than in the cafeteria. The District will provide hot and cold options as well as meals that can be heated at home. Once children begin attending school in classrooms again, breakfast and lunch will be delivered to the classroom.

UPDATE:  “Milford School District will begin offering free meals to children under the age of 18 on Wednesday, September 9,” Trish Gerken, Public Information Officer, said. “This is a welcome change to our previous announcement, which required student enrollment in the District to receive meals. On August 31, 2020, the U.S. Department of Agriculture extended several flexibilities that will allow summer meal program operators, such as Milford School District, to continue serving free meals to all children into the fall months.”

Gerken explained that prior to this, guidelines were based on the National School Breakfast and Lunch program where the district was required to serve only children enrolled in the district. There are no income requirements and no exchange of detail requirements such as last name and student ID. The meals are at no charge.

“We appreciate the incredible efforts by our school food service professionals year in and year out, but this year we have an unprecedented situation,” Sonny Perdue, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, said. “This extension of summer program authority will employ summer program sponsors to ensure meals are reaching all children – whether they are learning in the classroom or virtually – so they are fed and ready to learn, even in new and ever-changing learning environments.”

Forrest was extremely pleased to learn of the federal waivers.

“This is fantastic news for the families of the Milford community who have been struggling through this pandemic to feed their children due to loss of jobs or income,” Forrest said. “Without this program, families would face the increased burden of trying to feed children during the school year, when children are normally getting free meals in schools. Our children are our most important resources and throughout this crisis, we need to keep them nourished so they can learn and thrive, whether learning remotely or in school Please support the Child Nutrition program and staff by getting your free meals at the school closest to your home.”

The Weekend Backpack Program, conducted in partnership with the Delaware Food Bank, will continue. This program provides a “backpack” of food for students who may not have enough food at home over the weekend.

“We are continuing our Weekend Backpack Program as long as the Food Bank can help,” Forrest said. “Parents can pick up the backpacks on Fridays. In addition, the National Breakfast and Lunch Program still does not allow us to provide meals on non-instruction days. That means there are no meals on weekends and holidays, including Election Day.”

Meal Dates, Times and Locations are as follows:

Benjamin Banneker Elementary and Evelyn I. Morris Early Childhood Center

September 9 and 11 from 11:30 AM until 12 Noon

September 14, 16 and 18 from 10:30 until 11:00 AM

September 21 and going forward every Monday, Tuesday and Friday – 10:30 to 11:00 AM

Evelyn I. Morris Early Childhood Center

September 9 and 11 from 11:30 AM until 12 Noon

September 14, 16 and 18 from 10:30 until 11:00 AM

September 21 and going forward every Monday, Tuesday and Friday – 10:30 to 11:00 AM

Houston Volunteer Fire Department

September 9 and 11 – 11:30 to 12 Noon

September 14, 16 and 18 from 11:00 to 11:30 AM

September 21 and going forward every Monday, Tuesday and Friday – 11:00 to 11:30 AM

Milford Central Academy

September 9 and 11 – 11:30 to 12 Noon

September 14, 16 and 18 from 11:00 to 11:30 AM

September 21 and going forward every Monday, Tuesday and Friday – 11:00 to 11:30 AM

Mispillion Elementary School

September 14, 16 and 18 from 11:00 to 11:45 AM

September 21 and going forward every Monday, Tuesday and Friday – 11:00 to 11:45 AM

Mount Zion AME Church, Ellendale

September 9 and 11 from 11:30 AM until 12 Noon

September 14, 16 and 18 from 11:30 until 12 Noon

September 21 and going forward every Monday, Tuesday and Friday – 11:30 until Noon