Forsyth County Schools announced new meal prices for students ahead of the first day of class on Thursday, Aug. 4, reminding families that the district will no longer provide free meals.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has provided funding for students across the country to receive free breakfast and lunch at school since the pandemic began in 2020, but the free meal program officially ended on June 30.
Now, parents and guardians will see slightly higher meal prices when their child goes through the lunch line than what they were used to before the pandemic.
Lunch prices in FCS rose by 30 cents, bringing the elementary price to $3 for a meal and the middle and high school price to $3.10.
Breakfast prices price rose by 10-20 cents, with elementary at $1.70, middle school at $1.80 and high school at $1.90.
Reduced meal prices are 40 cents for all students.
The school system is urging families to make sure they have funds in their students’ accounts or have a prepaid meal plan before sending them off to school.
Families who qualify for free or reduced lunch can apply anytime through the school or an online application, but FCS spokesperson Jennifer Caracciolo said it’s best for families to go ahead and apply now.
To view the application and find more information, visit www.forsyth.k12.ga.us/freereduced.
Since free meals will no longer be offered to every student, FCS is also re-launching its Dining with Dignity program, which ensures that donations are placed in cafeterias’ house accounts at each school to provide students with a meal of their choice instead of a free cheese sandwich.
All donations given to the program are put into these house accounts that are then used to pay negative balances on students’ meal accounts at the end of the school year. Any funds left in the account after paying off the meals are rolled over to the next school year.
To make a tax-deductible donation, visit www.forsyth.k12.ga.us/edfoundation and select “donate now.” In the box labeled, “Add special instructions to the seller,” write Dining with Dignity and the names of the school the donation is going to.
Donations can also be made with cash or check to the Forsyth County Education Foundation at 1120 Dahlonega Highway in Cumming. In the subject line, write Dining with Dignity and the name of the school.