CLEARFIELD – More students have been eating school meals with the Clearfield Area School District’s implementation of the Community Eligibility Provision at the beginning of the 2018-19 year, reported Food Services Director Jeff Kavelak at Monday night’s school board meeting.
The CEP is a non-pricing meal service option for schools and school districts in low-income areas. CEP allows the nation’s highest poverty schools and districts to serve breakfast and lunch for free to all enrolled students without collecting household applications.
Instead, schools that adopt CEP are reimbursed using a formula based on the percentage of students categorically eligible for free meals based on their participation in other specific means-tested programs, such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF).
According to Kavelak, the Clearfield Area Elementary School saw approximately 100 more students daily at both breakfast and lunch when he compared this September’s figures to those from the same month last year.
He said the Clearfield Area Junior-Senior High School only saw an increase of approximately 10 students daily at breakfast this September, but it’s since “really started to take off.” Also, he said the CAJSHS had an increase of approximately 60 students daily at lunch.
Overall, Kavelak said the district has experienced an increase of 100 to 110 students at breakfast and 165 to 170 students at lunch on a daily basis. And, he said those numbers have continued to climb in the month of October.
The district implemented the CEP to avoid accruing more student meal debt, and Kavelak said he’ll be able to provide the board with a better financial picture in a couple months. However, he believed the district’s food services department is heading in the right direction.
In other business, the district approved the hiring of Jay Fannin as its director of facilities, effective Nov. 1, at a salary of $64,542. He will replace Rick Bunning, who resigned for retirement purposes at the end of August.
Superintendent Terry Struble reminded parents and guardians that snow is in the weather forecast. He encouraged them to update their Sapphire accounts, so that they receive school delay and cancellation notifications via phone call, text message or e-mail.
The board also voted to move its Dec. 3 reorganizational meeting to the Clearfield County Career & Technology Center. Board members will receive a tour and overview of the facilities and then hold its meeting at 6:45 p.m. at the school.