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ERIC Number: ED505974
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jul
Pages: 44
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
School Meal Programs: Experiences of the States and Districts That Eliminated Reduced-Price Fees. Report to the Chairman, Committee on Education and Labor, House of Representatives. GAO-09-584
Brown, Kay
US Government Accountability Office
In fiscal year 2008, about 31 million children participated in the National School Lunch Program and more than 10 million children participated in the School Breakfast Program each school day. The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) spent $11.7 billion on the school meal programs in that year. The majority of school meals are provided for free or at a reduced price to low-income students. Some states and school districts have chosen to implement programs that eliminate the reduced-price fee (known as ERP programs) and instead provide free meals to students eligible for the reduced fee. The US Government Accountability Office (GAO) was asked to provide information on (1) what is known about the states and districts that have eliminated the reduced-price fee for school meals; (2) the experiences of states and districts that have ERP programs with respect to participation, errors, and costs; and (3) the factors that may help or hinder the establishment or continuation of ERP programs. To obtain this information, GAO interviewed FNS officials, interviewed officials from state- and district-level programs, and conducted a Web-based survey of the 35 districts identified as having ERP programs. However, because the universe of ERP programs is unknown, survey results cannot be generalized to all districts with ERP programs. USDA did not provide formal written comments, but FNS provided technical comments, which were incorporated where appropriate. Appended to this report are (1) Objectives, Scope, and Methodology; (2) Universal Free Meals Programs under Alternative USDA Special Assistance Provisions; and (3) GAO Contact and Staff Acknowledgments. (Contains 10 tables, 8 figures, and 44 footnotes.)
US Government Accountability Office. 441 G Street NW, Washington, DC 20548. Tel: 202-512-6000; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education; Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: US Government Accountability Office