California Set to Approve $80M for School Meals

  • COVID-19 has resulted in budget deficits for 92% of the responding school nutrition departments.
  • The average deficit for each of the responding school districts was $1.36 million, or $56 per student.
  • If this pattern holds true in other school districts across the state, initial estimates suggest that California’s school food programs could be facing as much as $325 million of debt for just the first six months of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Initial estimates are based on survey responses from 19 school districts that serve 7% of California’s public school students.)
  • California’s $0.75 per meal allocation for March through mid-May will help, but is not enough. It will only cover current deficits at 4% of responding districts.
  • Some district leaders warned that without additional funding, there would be layoffs next year for the school nutrition employees — including those who put their lives on the line throughout the entire COVID-19 crisis.



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Kat Taylor

Kat Taylor

Impact Investor, Co-Founder and Board Chair of Beneficial State Bank and Co-Founder of TomKat Ranch Educational Foundation