ERIC Number: ED370706
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1994-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Food Assistance: Early Results of USDA's No-Fee School Meal Pilot Program. Testimony before the Elementary, Secondary, and Vocational Education Subcommittee, Committee on Education and Labor, House of Representatives.
Robinson, Robert A.
This document presents testimony offered in conjunction with the reauthorization of federal child nutrition programs, and specifically reports on the United States Department of Agriculture's no-fee school meal pilot program. This alternative program aims to reduce administrative costs to schools and to increase student participation. In the pilot program, which was implemented in four school districts, meals were served free to all students, regardless of household income; and school food authorities (SFAs), which are typically the school districts administering the program, used less time-consuming and paper-intensive methods to determine federal reimbursement than do SFAs that administer traditional fee-based programs. Results of the pilot programs indicated that SFAs reduced their administrative costs for running meal programs, staff time was saved as staff were reallocated to other tasks, the number of lunches served increased 10 percent, and federal reimbursement to the pilot SFAs increased 33 percent. It is concluded that, before adopting the no-fee approach nationwide, further study is needed. Each of the four pilot SFAs used a different approach to reduce the burden of paperwork associated with the meal program, and it is not clear which pilot approach was most effective. Nor is it clear how much federal reimbursements might increase if no-fee approaches are adopted nationwide. (TM)
Descriptors: Breakfast Programs, Cost Effectiveness, Federal Aid, Federal Programs, Hearings, Lunch Programs, Pilot Projects
U.S. General Accounting Office, P.O. Box 6015, Gaithersburg, MD 20884-6015 (first copy free; additional copies, $2 each; 100 or more copies mailed to a single address are discounted 25%).
Publication Type: Legal/Legislative/Regulatory Materials
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: General Accounting Office, Washington, DC. Resources, Community, and Economic Development Div.